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Balkans nations to take on drug traffickers

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(ZAGREB) - Western Balkans interior ministers on Friday pledged to step up the fight against the drug traffickers using the so-called Balkans route to western Europe.

"We estimate that 80 percent of heroin transported from Afghanistan and Pakistan to western Europe transits through our region," Serbian Interior Minister Ivica Dacic told reporters here.

"Moreover, most smugglers of cocaine from Latin America (to Western Europe) are from our region. That is the reason why our good cooperation is necessary in this field," he added.

The interior ministers from Montenegro, Serbia, Bosnia and Croatia and top officials from Slovenia and Macedonia met in Zagreb to discuss closer cooperation.

Dacic said that Serbian police and judicial authorities were interested in the creation of regional investigation teams and a regional operational centre that would improve the exchange of information on criminal networks.

According to the International Narcotics Control Board (OICS), the Balkans and West African have become a new route to western Europe for Latin American cocaine.


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