27 Aug 2019

Conference highlights Pacific's struggle to cope with drug trade

4:26 pm on 27 August 2019

The need for networking, sharing of information, and capacity building to fight the illicit drug trade has been underscored at the Pacific Islands Chiefs of Police Conference.

Samoa Police Chief Fuiavailili Egon Keil

Samoa Police Chief Fuiavailili Egon Keil Photo: RNZ Pacific/Monica Miller

Close to 100 international delegates attended the weekend meeting in American Samoa.

With drug crimes the focus of this year's meeting, Samoa's Police Commissioner Fuiavailili Egon Keil said there's a lot of work being done by the two Samoas to fight the growing problem.

He said drugs are entering the Samoan islands in all forms and they are trying to respond with the limited resources available.

"We don't have the money, the resources, the funding. We don't have the equipment. Sometimes we don't have the training. For example, this new drug Fentanyl. It is a very dangerous, addictive drug.

"It is a form of synthetic opiate that's coming into the Pacific. And it's already in the States, it's in Europe. Some of it is making its way to Australia now."

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs