PACIFIC NATIONS USED FOR DRUG TRADE: UN REPORT

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MELBOURNE, Australia (February 27, 2002 – Radio Australia)---A United Nations report on illegal drugs says some Pacific Islands nations are being used as staging posts for the drug trade into Australia.

As a result, Radio Australia correspondent Danuta Kozaki reports, the United Nations International Narcotics Control Board is calling for a cybercrime convention to try to stem the amount of illegal drugs sold over the Internet.

"In its annual report card, the Board says New Zealand and many other smaller Pacific island countries are being used more and more as trans shipment points for illegal drugs.

"United Nations information officer Angelique Doueihi said they include the ‘Cook Islands, Marshall Islands and Nauru, just to name a few.’

"Ms. Doueihi said that private chat rooms are being used by drug dealers, and that governments must address the challenges of new technology. ‘We're trying to make inroads of stopping the amount of drugs being sold online,’ she said, adding that ‘its becoming really hard because its so hard to track or trace these dealers."

"Danuta Kozaki, Radio Australia News."

For additional reports from Radio Australia, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Radio/TV News/Radio Australia.

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