HC Deb 03 May 1983 vol 42 cc15-6W
Mr. Skeet

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he will list the steps taken to secure a joint approach to the drug problem within the European Community; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Mellor

The main forum for co-operation between member states of the European Community is the Council of Europe co-operation group to combat drug abuse and illicit trafficking in drugs—the Pompidou Group; its membership comprises the 10 EC countries, together with Norway, Sweden and Turkey. Ministers and officials meet at regular intervals to exchange views and to carry forward a broad programme of co-operation. From time to time committees of the Council of Europe have also considered particular aspects of drug misuse. The Naples convention of 1963 provides for mutual assistance between the customs authorities of EC member states, while cooperation between law enforcement agencies also takes place through the international criminal police organisation—Interpol—and the Customs Co-operation Council. In addition, there are close bilateral contacts between countries on operational matters and on individual cases.