The 13th edition of Hemaya International Forum and Exhibition on Drug Issues, has concluded today with a new chapter written in the book of global anti-narcotics measures. The theme of the two-day event this year was “Foreseeing the Future of the Global Combat of Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances: Predictions, Preparations and Prevention Strategies for 2030.”
The forum, which branched into a conference, exhibition and several workshops, has explored the great challenge governments, organizations and communities encounter locally, regionally and globally in combating drugs. Also, it has given the opportunity to various government and non-government agencies to exhibit their vital roles and responsibilities in contributing to the sensitive action of countering drugs and its spread. Moreover, the forum has stressed the arduous task and huge responsibility of parents in building a brighter future through investing in their children’s awareness of the imminent threats of drugs and narcotics.
The participants at the 13th International Forum and Exhibition on Drug Issues have recommended calling upon the relevant entities to build forward-looking models that commensurate the nature of the phenomenon of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances.
The recommendations also invited the competent authorities in the Arab region to establish an Arab observatory to study the indicators and trends of drug abuse and patterns of addiction and to benefit from the experience of the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA). They further included inviting the relevant institutions to benefit from the pioneering experiences in dealing with the drug phenomenon such as the experience of the EU Commission, the National Program for Drug Prevention in Saudi Arabia (Nebras), the experience of the Kuwaiti Health Cities, the experience of the Combatting & Treating Addiction Foundation in Egypt, and the experience of Hemaya International Program in the UAE. Another recommendation was to call on countries to adopt legislations that are capable of facing the expected challenges of the growing phenomenon of drugs, and that the laws legislated by different countries be circulated through relevant international and regional institutions.
An additional recommendation was to call upon countries to increase penalties of combating drug smugglers and traffickers, the need to increase measures on convicts, not to allow them to visit their families during religious and national events, and to take the necessary legislative measures to allocate proceeds from drug and money laundering offenses associated with the treatment and rehabilitation of addicts, To detect drugs and link them to government jobs.
The recommendations included also inviting research institutions to take advantage of quantitative information research findings on social media and the internet to develop proactive prevention strategies to deal with trends and patterns of drug and psychotropic substance abuse. Invite family and community institutions to develop strategies and policies to address patterns of expected changes in communities that may affect them, invite formal and informal civil society organizations to take advantage of future researches. Drug companies and companies should also be invited to highlight the negative aspects of some psychotropic drugs in a manner that is easy to understand and inform law enforcement institutions of the risks and negative effects of psychotropic drugs before they are introduced to the market. To launch a high-quality Arab course in the field of drug prevention. The mechanisms and tools for looking ahead will call for activating the role of youth in prevention programs through various youth councils, and to benefit from their aspirations and orientations in the development of (5%) of its revenues and channeling them to drug prevention programs and treatment of addiction and rehabilitation, calling for the international protection program, which is an international platform for dialogue, discussion and exchange of experiences and policies on the growing variables on the phenomenon of drugs. To continue to implement the annual Hemaya International Forum & Exhibition on Drug Issues and conduct it in a different Arab country every year.
The topics at the conference were presented through four main scopes: Future Foresight, Field and Preventive, Sanitary & Medicinal, and Social & Economic. The first scope was covered during the first day of the forum. Proceeding with the second scope – Field and Preventive – H.E. Dr. Faisal Al-Shathri, Secretary-General of the National Committee of Anti-Narcotics (NEBRAS) in KSA has chaired second session which commenced on the second day of the conference.
Rudy Klausmann from the German Customs Investigation Bureau (ZKA) has presented the topic “Emerging and Evolving Risks-Fight against Narcotic Drugs from the LEA’s Perspective.” This was followed by “The Effectiveness of Drug Control Agencies in Dealing with the Expected Development of the Drug Control Techniques,” delivered by Brigadier General Abdul Rahman Al Owais, Deputy Director-General of the Anti-Narcotics Federal Directorate and Chairman of the Anti-Narcotics Executive Bureau – UAE.
Within the perspective of the forum’s theme, Dr. Samy Al Humoud, Executive Director of the National Drug Prevention Project (Nebras) in KSA, has participated with his presentation “Foresighting the Perspectives of Drug Prevention and their Implications on Public Policies.” After that, Dr. Laila Al Hayas from the Department of Education and Knowledge, Abu Dhabi and Chief of Preventive Committee in the National Program for Drugs Prevention (SIRAJ) gave a presentation on “The Role of Foresighting the Future in the Development of Preventive Programs.”
“Foresighting the Patterns and Trends of Drug Production, Consumption and Combatting Mechanisms” was given by Colonel Hussein Mohammed Al Shebli, Director of the Arab Bureau for Drug Affairs at the Arab Interior Ministers Council in Jordan. The second session was finalized with an open discussion for the attendees. Following that, H.E. Major General. Dr. Ahmad Eid Almansoori was the Chairman of the third session which was dedicated to the Sanitary & Medicinal Scope. In this session, Dr Amin Hussein Al Amiri, Assistant Undersecretary for Public Health Policy and Licensing, and Chairman of the Higher Committee for Pharmacovigilance – Ministry of Health & Prevention – UAE, participated with the topic “Psychiatric Diseases and the Subsequent Trends of Abusing Psychotropic Substances and the Mechanism of Combatting them.”
Salama Bent Ghalita and Aisha Ali Bin Tamim, both Assistant Chemical Experts at the General Department of Forensic Science and Criminology at Dubai Police, shared presenting the topic “Foresighting the Changes and Developments in the Field of Forensic Evidence in the Detection of Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Techniques.” “The Readiness of Rehabilitation Institutions to Deal with the Expected Challenges 2030,” was the topic covered by Dr. Hisham Alaraby from the National Rehabilitation Center (NRC) in Abu Dhabi.
Detective Chief Inspector & Expert on Synthetic Drugs, Precursors, New Psychoactive Substances (NPS) Johannes van den Besselaar, from Netherlands, talked about the topic “Problems of Chemical Precursor Control at The International and National Levels.” Dr. Tareq bin Mohammed Al-Ahmadi from King Fahad Security College, KSA, addressed “The Readiness of Research Centers and Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Companies to Deal with the Expected Challenges by 2030.” An open discussion was the final part that marked the end of Session 3.
The fourth session commenced with the Social & Economic scope, chaired by Claire Williams, UK National Crime Agency Liaison Officer. Dr. Ahmad Al Shatti, Public Health Consultant and Executive Director of the National Anti-Drugs Media Project (GHIRAS) in Kuwait, presented on the “Community Initiatives of Prevention, Treatment and Rehabilitation…Healthy Cities as a Model.” Then Dr. Ateeq Abdulaziz Jikka Al Mansoori, Deputy Director for Students’ Affairs and Director of the UAE University Center for Public Policy and Leadership participated with a presentation on “Social Problems, Relevant Expected Challenges 2030 and Combatting Mechanisms to Counter Drugs and Psychotropic Substances.”
Prof. Ernesto Damiani, Director of Information Security Center, Electrical and Computer Engineering & EBTIC in the UAE, shared an in-depth topic on “Toward Large-Scale Prediction of Abuse Behavioral Patterns through Artificial Intelligence and Big Data Analytics.” Afterwards, “The Social Impacts of Drug Abuse Phenomenon and the Combatting Mechanisms of Security Agencies,” was presented by Mr. Laurent Cozanet, the Safety and Security Attaché in the Embassy of France, UAE. As for the role of social media, Dr. Mohammed Al Kuwaiti, Senior Vice President of Government Affairs at Dark Matter in the UAE, addressed “Social Media and Its Impacts on the Trends and Patterns of Drug Abuse” in his presentation. The final talk in Session 4 was “Patterns of Family Development and Their Impacts on Drug Abuse Trends,” given by Professor Layachi Anser from the University of Sharjah.
Moving on to the workshops, “Investing the Future Foresight Mechanisms for Designing Preventive Programs,” was given by Dr. Mohammed Al Nassar, from the Saudi Center for Studies and Research on Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Prevention at Al-Imam Muhammad Ibn Saud Islamic University in the KSA. Simultaneously, “The Present and Futuristic Trends in the Criminal Evidence Field of Detecting Drugs Crimes,” was given by a group of trainers: Colonel, First Expert and Chemist Khalid Al Sumaiti, Director of Technical Affairs; Assistant Expert 1st Lieutenant Mohamed Yaaqoub Almarzooqi; Salama Bent Ghalita, Assistant Chemical Expert; and Aisha Ali Bin Tamim, Assistant Chemical Expert at the General Department of Forensic Science and Criminology.
The parallel exhibition has also concluded its work with the following activities: exhibits and pavilions of the participating entities, youth activities, activities of youth councils, aqdar Puppet Theatre for Students, student competitions and social media platforms.
The 13th Hemaya International Forum & Exhibition on Drug Issues was concluded with open discussions, recommendations and final speech, with aspiration to look forward to the next edition of this featured and important event next year.
“The Volunteer Amal” answers youth questions in the session “Youth Confronting Drugs”
On the sidelines of the conference, Brigadier Eid Mohammed Thani Hareb, Director of the General Department of Anti-Narcotics – Dubai Police, attended a youth circle under the title “Youth Confronting drugs” organized by the Dubai Police Young Leadership Council, with the participation of a number of specialists and youth from different backgrounds. The session was marked by the participation of a robot called “Volunteer Amal” that have answered various questions about the causes of drug abuse and how to prevent it from happening and the role of the family in raising awareness.
The session has also discussed the role of self-development in keeping young people away from the scourge of abuse, possible support from government and private agencies to keep young people away from drugs, and finally the importance of youth volunteering as ambassadors to raise awareness about this issue.
Brigadier Eid Hareb noted during his participation about the one of the important problems that must be recognized which is the inability of the youngsters and youth to distinguish between good and bad friends and the influences they might have on their behavior or actions especially in such a dangerous issue like drugs.
Brigadier Eid Hareb added that the desire to experiment and the feeling of boredom is also one of the reasons that lead young people to become victims of drugs, explaining that the reasons for drug dealing during the past four years was bad companions and their curiosity to experiment it themselves.
The interactive session discussed how to create a safe school environment, the role of teaching staff, parents and students in curbing this scourge.
The event was held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, Chairman of Dubai Executive Council at the Dubai World Trade Center, organized by the Dubai Police General Headquarters in partnership with INDEX Conferences and Exhibitions, in collaboration with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and a number of international and regional partners.