Qatar joined the countries of the world in celebrating International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, which falls on June 26, under the slogan 'Better Knowledge for Better Care', to emphasise the role of knowledge and science in confronting the drug problem and its real risks. The event also consolidates the concept of joint international co-operation to address the problem.
Qatar is moving forward in developing awareness programmes on drug risks, implementing relevant strategies and plans, and strengthening international co-operation to confront this serious and cross-border scourge.
Director of the Department of Studies and International Affairs of the General Directorate of Drug Enforcement Major Mohamed Abdullah al-Khater said the drug problem is one of the crimes that threaten the security and safety of individuals and societies, and its dimensions have crossed the borders of one country to take an international aspect that affects all areas of life.
In his remarks, Major al-Khater said that scientific progress in the means of communication has led to the rapid spread of this scourge among countries, as criminal gangs use this progress to achieve their sordid goals of promotion, smuggling, and trafficking, which has made it difficult to find radical solutions to reduce them regardless of the capabilities, size, and capabilities of countries. This is especially after these gangs transferred their illegal activities out of the national and regional borders into the global arena to become a transcontinental crime.
From this standpoint, international and regional co-operation between agencies and bodies concerned in drug control and related activities has been strengthened to achieve an integrated and comprehensive approach to exchanging information and experiences to confront this problem internationally, he added. He warned that any country alone cannot meet all forms of this crime without international co-operation with other countries, indicating that international drug agreements and the organisation of periodic international conferences, seminars, and meetings enhance this co-operation.
Major al-Khater stressed that Qatar is one of the leading countries in enhancing international co-operation and co-ordination by ratifying the provisions and principles of all regional and international agreements related to combating drugs and dangerous psychotropic substances, as well as its active presence and distinguished participation in relevant conferences and meetings.
He also stressed that Qatar is building good relations with counterparts in different countries, as well as organisations and bodies related to drug control at the regional and international levels, which contributed to achieving field successes and achievements represented in thwarting many smuggling operations targeting the state and arrest of smugglers.
Regarding the efforts made by Qatar in the fight against drugs, Assistant Director of the Department of Studies and International Affairs of the General Directorate of Drug Enforcement Captain Nasser Zayed al-Hassawi said that reducing the demand for drugs is one of the pillars of confronting this dangerous scourge, limiting its spread and exposing its risks.
He pointed out that the General Directorate of Drug Enforcement has attached the highest importance to this aspect of reducing demand through its operational programmes and plans to enhance security awareness among citizens and residents. This is also done by creating a unified and integrated reference that enables them to deal with this problem and address it early, which supports prevention and control efforts and contributes to achieving the desired goals that the directorate seeks to achieve in raising the level of public awareness of the drug issue of the individual, family, and society and promoting Islamic values, ethical standards, and life skills.
He pointed out that the national project to raise awareness of the harm and risks of drugs is a pioneering experience in deepening security and preventive awareness in which many state institutions and civil society organisations participate to immunise all groups of society against the scourge of drugs and psychotropic substances as well as raise their level of awareness about the dangers of addictive and deviant behaviours.
He stated that the project includes many educational activities and programmes such as lectures, courses, and exhibitions, organising seminars, training seminars, workshops, cultural competitions and distributing educational publications and publications in public and private schools, military and civil institutes and colleges, universities, companies, civil society institutions, and others.
He also pointed out that the project includes online awareness campaigns to raise awareness of the harms and dangers of drugs through electronic screens in public places, parks, sports clubs, etc, indicating that these campaigns targeted about 170,000 people last year.