Lagos, Nigeria (PANA) - The US Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs and the Woodrow Wilson Centre will co-host a panel discussion on international efforts to combat drug trafficking in West Africa, the US State Department has announced.
It said ''Combating Narcotics Trafficking in West Africa” would discuss West Africa’s approach to the global drug trade and the steps the international community is taking to address the challenges posed to the region by narcotics trafficking and associated transnational organised crime.
The panellists include Dr. Adrienne Diop, Commissioner for Human Development and Gender for the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS); and William R. Brownfield, Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs.
Others are Alexandre Garcia, Head of Transnational Threats Division, French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Ambassador Said Djinnit, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Office for West Africa (UNOWA).
According to information provided by the State Department, transnational organised crime, including drug trafficking, is a major threat to security and governance throughout West Africa.
Since the 1990s, the global drug trade has expanded rapidly in West Africa as international traffickers began to refine techniques and develop networks to operate in Africa.
Now these traffickers are moving a range of products and people through the region, undermining good governance and threatening stability.
Narcotics trafficking fuels increases in violence and corruption as criminal networks attempting co-opt and marginalize government officials and security forces responsible for fighting these crimes.
-0- PANA SEG 26Oct2012