Asean leaders have made a strong stand against suggestions for countries in this region to be "more liberal" on certain drugs. Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the suggestion could not be accepted in Asean, as such a mould could not be used in the region. Pix by Hairul Anuar Rahim

SINGAPORE: Asean leaders have made a strong stand against suggestions for countries in this region to be "more liberal" on certain drugs.

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the suggestion could not be accepted in Asean, as such a mould could not be used in the region.

"Empirical studies have shown that in some countries where the use of certain drugs were allowed, this led to an increase in illicit drug usage.

"And because of this, we have taken a stand that this mould (to allow usage of certain drugs) cannot be used in this region."

Zahid, who is also Home Minister, said Asean was united in its stand and had rejected the suggestion.

"There is zero-tolerance towards drugs," he told a press conference during the 5th Asean Ministerial Meeting on Drug Matters (AMMD) here, today.

In April, Malaysia had delivered the unified Asean statement, as entrusted by the 4th AMMD, at the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on the World Drug Problem in New York, underscoring its firm stand against illicit drugs, consistent with three international drug control conventions.

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