China, Canada to Work Together to Curb Free Flow of Fentanyl, Illegal Drugs
Canada's national police have signed an agreement with China's Ministry of Public Security to curb the free flow of Fentanyl and other illicit drugs across Canadian cities.
The memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and Chinese public security ministry comes after Canada has been hit hard by drug epidemic that has left scores of people dead in recent months.
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"Fentanyl and other opioids pose a grave threat to the safety of Canadian communities," RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson said in a statement.
"Our meeting this week was an important step forward and highlights the commitment between our two organizations to enhance operational collaboration, identify key areas of concern and work towards a coordinated approach to combat fentanyl trafficking," he added.
The two agencies will start to work on their joint investigation reportedly from next week.
The announcement about the MOU was made at British Columbia, the Canadian province that has been hit hardest by fentanyl and opioid crisis. The western province has witnessed death of nearly 622 people during the first 10 months this year due to drug overdose, with presence of fentanyl being detected in most cases.
In April, the British Columbia was forced to declare a public emergency after witnessing a sharp rise in drug-related death.
The Chinese government's decision to work jointly with RCMP is apparently seen as tacit acknowledgment about the deadly role played by the country's sprawling chemicals industry in spreading drug epidemics across Canada and other parts of the world.
An investigation conducted by a leading Canadian Newspaper earlier this year showed how fentanyl is produced at large scale in China and also easily shipped to Canada. It further revealed that drugs in Canada are easily available through online shopping.