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Bolivian President urges to regionalize fight against drugs

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La Paz, Feb 23 (Prensa Latina) The president of Bolivia, Luis Arce, urged today to internationalize the fight against drug trafficking at the opening of the XXIV Coordination Meeting of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC)-European Union (EU) on this issue.

Before 174 delegates from 43 countries gathered at the Casa Grande del Pueblo (government headquarters), Arce ratified the concepts that his government promotes in various international forums.

In his first participation as a full member of the Southern Common Market (Mercosur), the President proposed last December 7 to regionalize this battle.

There is a problem that is always burdening the region, which is the issue of drug trafficking, which today has even complicated political figures in several of our countries, and has clearly shown that the fight (…) against this scourge is no longer only of one country’, he said.

At the Summit of Heads of State in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, he expressed his concern that the battle will be lost if a regional confrontation is not carried out.

We have been stigmatized for many years (…) I am not only talking about Colombia, Mexico, Bolivia, (but) other countries’, he warned.

He also stressed the political and economic aspects of this issue, since, according to him, little by little, all these international mafias are beginning to interfere in these spheres.

On the eve, the Minister of Government, Eduardo del Castillo, called to articulate efforts and regionalize the fight against drugs and organized crime when he presented the constitutive proposal of the Latin American Anti-Narcotics Alliance (ALA).

Before the delegates gathered at the Casa Grande Hotel in La Paz, the head of the ALA presented the constitutive treaty and the manual of operation in the context of the III Annual Meeting of Latin America and the Caribbean-European Union Cooperation on Drug Policy (Copolad).

‘The ALA is a specialized regional center for the exchange of information between the parties and to strengthen the ties of mutual cooperation and solidarity in order to face the fundamental challenges in the fight against drugs,’ he said.

He explained that, by means of an agreement and a declaration of creation, the representatives of the different countries will be able to initiate an internal debate that will lead to the creation of the ALA.

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