Newsbrief: DEA Training Narcs in India 8/20/04

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A five-person Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) team is in India to provide training in US-style drug law enforcement to federal anti-narcotics agents and drug police in Mumbai (formerly known as Bombay), the largest city in the world's most populous democracy. According to the Times of India, a similar training program has already occurred in New Delhi, and more are set with police forces in Kolkata (Calcutta) and Chennai (Madras).

The training programs are designed to teach local drug squads as well as customs agents and Narcotics Control Bureau personnel in the techniques that have served the US so well in its hundred-year war against drugs. It will also help the DEA develop intelligence on Indian drug markets.

"We will discuss issues like investigation techniques, drug identification, intelligence gathering through informants and other sources and also share our experience in combating the drug mafia in the US. The program will also help us to understand the drug problem in India," an unnamed DEA official told the Times.

The DEA has not take a sudden benevolent interest in India's drug abuse problem, such as it is. Instead, according to a Mumbai police official consulted by the Times, the US is concerned with the massive flows of opium and heroin out of Afghanistan. Since the US overthrow of the Taliban in late 2001, and its replacement by a government installed and supported by the US, Afghanistan has resumed its place as the world's number-one opium producing nation, responsible for three-quarters of the global supply, according to the United Nations.

"The program will be beneficial for us. We can also share information on international drug traffickers with US officials," said the Mumbai narc. "Drugs produced in Afghanistan are being routed via Pakistan or Nepal into India and then smuggled into Europe, US and other parts of the world," he added.

The DEA mobile training team in India is one of three such teams, budgeted at slightly under a million dollars each per year. The DEA uses them to instill US-style drug enforcement orthodoxy around the world. According to the agency, the teams train about 2,100 foreign police in 58 countries each year. The agency is seeking funding for a fourth team this fiscal year to "specifically address international training needs in the Andean Region and Mexico as well as training needs in vital areas of Southwest Asia, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East," DEA administrator Karen Tandy told Congress in March.

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Issue #350, 8/20/04 Editorial: Count the People | What We Are Watching at Drug War Chronicle | California Patients Sue to Get Seized Marijuana Returned | Recount of Nevada Marijuana Initiative Petitions Underway Following Federal Court Ruling | DEA, Academic Pain Specialists Issue New Guidelines on Prescribing Pain Relievers | Newsbrief: Canadian Marijuana Activist/Entrepreneur Marc Emery Jailed for 90 Days | Newsbrief: DEA Raids Massive California Medical Marijuana Grow | Newsbrief: Justice Department Using Pre-Written Op-Eds to Shill for Mandatory Minimums | Newsbrief: DEA Training Narcs in India | Newsbrief: Death Squad Killings Continue in Philippines, Civil Society Begins to Protest | Newsbrief: Iraq Reinstates Death Penalty, Includes Drug Trafficking | Newsbrief: Medical Marijuana "Sends Wrong Message" Claims Challenged By Decreasing California Teen Marijuana Use | Newsbrief: This Week's Corrupt Cops Story | Media Scan: Chicago Reader on Tribune-Hemp Connection, Counterpunch on California and Medical Marijuana Doctors | Part-Time and Temporary Job Opportunities at DRCNet | Job Opportunities at MPP | The Reformer's Calendar
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