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17. 3.

98 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 82/5

Answer
(17 October 1997)

The Council follows closely events in Rwanda and Zaire and has discussed the situation in the Great Lakes
region at every meeting since the outbreak of the conflict in Zaire. The Council does not make any distinction
between its Members but expects all to do everything within their powers to implement Council decisions or
conclusions. The Council has repeatedly expressed its support for the mediation efforts of the UN, OAU and
regional leaders and the Special Envoy of the EU has taken active part in their mediation efforts. The Council has
repeatedly expressed its support for the holding of an international conference under the auspices of the UN and
the OAU to find a political settlement to the different conflicts to the region.

(98/C 82/06) WRITTEN QUESTION E-1060/97


by Jacques Donnay (UPE) and Jean-Claude Pasty (UPE) to the Council
(24 March 1997)

Subject: Traffic in cocaine from Surinam

The population of northern France, especially the Lille region, is increasingly feeling the disastrous effects of the
traffic in drugs from Colombia and Surinam, via the Netherlands.

The Dutch press only recently reported on the scale of the cocaine trade, in connection with the activities of the
Surinam mafia.

The Dutch Minister of Justice apparently now has sufficient evidence to take legal action against the very clearly
designated organizers of this trade.

Court action by the Dutch judicial authorities would be welcome as it would complement the diplomatic
measures taken.

1. Given that the European Council has set action to combat drug dealing as one of its priorities, does the
President of the European Council intend to encourage the Dutch Government to take action against those
responsible for this traffic?

2. Is the President of the European Council prepared to engage in cooperation, in particular with regard to
police forces, and access to the relevant files, with his other EU partners, who are victims of this traffic?

Answer
(16 October 1997)

1. The fight against trafficking in drugs was one of the highest priorities of the Irish as well as the Netherlands
Presidencies during the second half of 1996 and first half of 1997. A number of Council decisions aiming at
enhanced cooperation between the Member States and their law enforcement authorities in their fight against
drugs have been made, such as:
− the Joint Action of 29 November 1996 on cooperation between customs authorities and business
organisations in combating drug trafficking,
− the Joint Action of 29 November 1996 concerning the exchange of information on the chemical profiling of
drugs to facilitate improved cooperation between Member States in combating illicit drug trafficking,
− the Council Resolution of 29 November 1996 on the drawing up of police-customs agreements in the fight
against drugs,
− the Joint Action of 17 December 1996 concerning the approximation of the laws and practices of the
Member States to combat drug addiction and to prevent and combat illegal drug trafficking,
C 82/6 EN Official Journal of the European Communities 17. 3. 98

− the Council Resolution of 20 December 1996 on sentencing for serious illicit drug trafficking,
− the Joint Action of 9 June 1997 on the refining of targeting criteria, selection methods etc., and collection of
customs and police information, and
− the Joint Action of 16 June 1997 concerning information exchange, assessment and control of new synthetic
drugs.

2. Cooperation between the European Union and the Latin American region in the fight against drug
trafficking is also constantly being developed. With the Andean Community a ministerial meeting was held in
September 1995. Pursuant, to this meeting high level experts meetings took place in March 1996 and June 1997.

3. Under the Netherlands Presidency special attention has been given to action against Latin American
criminal organisations. The Europol Drugs Unit EDU has prepared a report, and the implementation of its
recommendations will start under the Luxembourg Presidency.

So far the Presidency has not undertaken specific action in regard to drugs trafficking from Surinam.

The question of the initiation of criminal proceedings or any other action by a particular Member State is a
responsibility of that Member State and does not fall within the scope of activities of the Council.

(98/C 82/07) WRITTEN QUESTION E-1133/97


by Carlos Robles Piquer (PPE) to the Council
(24 March 1997)

Subject: New NATO Research and Technology Organization

NATO’s new R&T Board, which held its first meeting at the end of November 1996 as the governing body of
NATO’s Research and Technology Organization, replaces the previous management bodies of the Defence
Research Group and AGARD (Advisory Group for Aerospace Research and Development).

Given the desire to continue emphasizing aeronautical technology in the fifth framework programme and the
growing need, within the Community framework, for technological assessments with a solid scientific basis,
does the Council plan to monitor the Technology Coordination Reports, which were first compiled in 1995, and
draw conclusions on the possible implications for the development of civil technology of this source of
information which is available to most Member States?

Answer
(17 October 1997)

Research related to Aeronautical technology has been one of the growing sectors in the Community RTD
Framework Programmes. Several projects in this area are at present being funded from resources of the
4th Framework Programme.

Such funding has covered only civil aspects of aeronautical technology since the Community Framework
Programme does not give any support for military research, which is not covered by the EC Treaty.

The Honourable Member of Parliament is informed that there does not exist any forum wihtin the Council, nor is
one envisaged in the future, for exchanging views with NATO organisations on this subject. It is not, therefore,
foreseen that the Council would examine or monitor the reports referred to in the Question.