Press Releases

ASEAN Remains Committed to a Zero-Tolerance Stance Against Drug Abuse

Published: 29 October 2015

1.Mr Desmond Lee, Senior Minister of State (SMS) for Home Affairs and National Development, attended the 4th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on Drug Matters in Langkawi, Malaysia, from 28 to 29 October 2015. He was accompanied by Mr Ng Ser Song, Director of the Central Narcotics Bureau, and officials from the Ministry of Home Affairs and Central Narcotics Bureau.


2.  During the Ministerial Meeting, SMS Lee observed that the global drug situation had worsened, and voiced concern that some countries were moving towards a softer and less robust approach in tackling the drug problem. He urged ASEAN Member States and their law enforcement agencies to continue adopting a zero-tolerance approach to drug abuse and to stand firm against any proposal to impose such soft approaches towards drugs on all countries. He said that it was important to work with families and community partners such as schools and voluntary welfare organisations to raise young people's awareness about the harm and addictiveness of drugs.


3.  SMS Lee reaffirmed Singapore's commitment to the vision of a Drug-Free ASEAN, and urged ASEAN Member States to stand together at the upcoming United Nations General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on the World Drug Problem in April 2016. The ASEAN Ministers agreed to deliver a joint ASEAN statement on ASEAN's zero-tolerance approach to drug abuse at UNGASS in April 2016 and at its preceding preparatory meeting, the 59th Session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, in March 2016.


4. SMS Lee called on Malaysia's Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Home Affairs, Dato' Seri Dr. Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who chaired the Ministerial Meeting. SMS Lee also met with his ASEAN counterparts to discuss strategies to counter the abuse and illicit trafficking of drugs.


5. Singapore will host the 5th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on Drug Matters in 2016.


Issued by:

Ministry of Home Affairs

29 October 2015