August 20, 2016

Yangon to prioritise seizures, arrests during 100-day drug crackdown

THE Yangon Region government will focus on drug seizures and arrests rather than the elimination of drug production during its 100-day drug crackdown, said regional Minister for Security and Border Affairs Col Tin Aung Tun yesterday.
“It is required to ensure security effectiveness in order to curb the inflow narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances from other parts of the country into Yangon,” said the regional minister.
The flow of narcotic drugs into the region has increased with smooth transport and the speedy flow of commodities, added the minister, pointing out that it is easy to smuggle drugs as well as arms into the region as some checkpoints have been removed.
The minister called for more deployments of police personnel and the use of modern equipment and technology to interrupt drug smuggling.
Police Lt-Col Kyaw Kyaw Min expressed his view that the eradication of narcotic drugs is easier said than done, stressing the need to take necessary measures for the prevention and control of narcotic drugs.
“Under the 100-day plan, drug-related arrests and seizures have increased fivefold,” said Police Lt-Col Kyaw Kyaw Min, adding that most of the seized drugs are believed to have been transported to Bangladesh via Rakhine State.
According to the Yangon Police Force, an anti-narcotic squad of 876 police personnel has been deployed in the region’s four districts, including Yangon International Airport and the jetties.
Under ‘Operation Dagon’ from 1 to 11 May, 105 suspects were arrested in 77 drug-related cases, police said.
Minister Col Tin Aung Tun suggested that the Union government allow police to use seized money in anti-narcotic drug activities.
During the 12-year period from 1993 to 2014, police seized movable and unmovable assets worth K57.236 billion in connection with drug-related cases, he said.
In his recent pledge to ensure the rule of law in Yangon, Yangon Region Chief Minister U Phyo Min Thein said measures will be taken to ensure the effectiveness of police service by increasing police strength and equipping them with modern devices and technology.


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