International Narcotics Control

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Background/ Description:

The lead agency for international drug policy is the State Department. The Bureau for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) within the State Department is responsible for the design and execution of international counter-narcotics policy, and for coordinating all other U.S. agencies' overseas anti-drug activities.

The INL bureau funds and manages the International Narcotics Control (INC) program, through which the State Department provides aid and training to the governments and security forces of countries in which drugs are produced or transported.

According to its 1999 Congressional Presentation, the INC program has the following strategic objectives:

1.Reduce drug crop cultivation through a combination of eradication and alternative development programs;
2.Strengthen the ability of law enforcement and judicial institutions that investigate and prosecute major drug trafficking organizations, seize and block their assets; and
3.Improve the capacity of host nation police and military forces to attack narcotics production and trafficking centers.

The INC program combines economic and security assistance, aiding civilian and military agencies with counter-narcotics responsibilities. Types of assistance include (but are not limited to) training, technical assistance, equipment and arms transfers, development assistance (particularly to encourage cultivation of legal crops), and aid to administration of justice and domestic drug demand-reduction programs. State Department INL officials themselves may manage assistance programs, or INC funds may be transferred to other government agencies.

The "end use" of counter-narcotics aid is a common concern of observers both within and outside the U.S. government. Without sufficient oversight, U.S.-supplied equipment or training can be misused for purposes unrelated to narcotics, including the abuse of human rights.

The General Accounting Office (GAO) reported in February 1998 that end-use
monitoring continues to be problematic:

The Departments of State and Defense were not coordinating their efforts with each other and did not have complete oversight over U.S. counter-narcotics programs because they had not developed an adequate end-use monitoring system to ensure that U.S.-provided counter-narcotics assistance was being used as intended.

Law Enforcement Training pays for training programs carried out by the DEA, Customs Service, and Coast Guard. The 1999 Congressional Presentation for the State Department's Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) lists three objectives for the INC Narcotics Law Enforcement program:

1) Contribute to the basic infrastructure for carrying out counter-narcotics law enforcement activities in cooperating countries;
2) Improve technical and investigative skills of anti-drug law enforcement personnel in key narcotics countries; and
3) Increase cooperation and coordination between U.S. and foreign law enforcement officials.

INC-funded training is carried out by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA, within the Justice Department), U.S. Customs Service (within the Treasury Department), and U.S. Coast Guard (within the Transportation Department -- and the Defense Department when the U.S. is at war). Since 1971, the INC program has transferred about $109 million to these three agencies, training 61,600 foreign anti-narcotics officials worldwide. The program trained 6,739 participants worldwide in 1996, growing to 8,250 in 1997. This total includes individuals trained by the DEA using funds from the Department of Justice's Asset Forfeiture

INC-funded law enforcement training seeks to improve counter-narcotics capabilities in recipient countries and to increase contact between U.S. and recipient-country personnel. Courses are generally tailored to "senior-level management and policy-level officials, while programs offered overseas are normally for operational personnel." Most recipient-country agencies are civilian; very few military personnel are trained through this program.

Training focuses on subjects such as money laundering, chemical controls, judicial programs and drug awareness. A key emphasis is on the strengthening of host-country institutions in order to make them self-sufficient, as the notes the 1999 Congressional Presentation indicates:

Basic instruction programs were provided [in 1998] only in countries having limited experience with anti-narcotics activities. Most of the training scheduled was in more sophisticated areas, such as executive and management development, asset forfeiture and financial investigations, use of special enforcement teams, counter-narcotics security measures and instructional techniques.

Only countries considered to be "high priority for U.S. anti-narcotics interests" receive training through the narcotics law enforcement program. Through diplomatic channels, INL "will coordinate with other providers of training, and urge them to shoulder greater responsibility in providing training which serves their particular strategic interests."

Narcotics Law Enforcement Training Budget
(In Thousands U.S. Dollars)

  FY 96 Actual   FY 97 Actual  FY 98 Estimate  FY 99 Request  FY 00 Request
 DEA  2230 3128 3100 2900  
 Customs  2181 2392  2400 2300  
 Coast Guard  410 588 600 500  
 TrainingSupport 179 192 200 100  
 Total  7000 9000 9000 8000  




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