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Compliance Study: France

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"Therefore, we commit ourselves to ... Resist the enormous threat posed by narcotic traffickers, by implementing the UN conventions against drugs, and intensifying efforts to put traffickers behind bars and prevent them from laundering their money."


The French Government has taken numerous occasions to speak of the need, particularly with the impending coordination of political, economic, and social policy inherent in the European Union structure, to work together to fight the huge problem of drug trafficking in Europe. The French Foreign Minister, Herve de Charette, spoke in June 1996 on the need for states to conform to their international obligations, particularly the Schengen Convention concerning the Pays-Bas region (Article 71). He emphasized the immediate need to coordinate policies between nations with regards to police services, border controls, and judicial structures.

On 14 December 1996, President Chirac reiterated this policy position at the European Council Meeting in Dublin. He stated, with regards to the Pays-Bas region, that the French Government felt that the existing agreement is too weak, while the Pays-Bas consider it too ambitious. The President referred specifically to the need to develop a cooperative security framework within the European Union. Chirac outlined the importance of definitively concluding the development of the EU's common defense and security policy. The problem, according to Chirac, is that Holland's legislation and practices on drug trafficking is vastly different than that of the other EU countries. The European Council used this meeting to adopt a series of measures pertaining to members' Justice and Interior Affairs departments that addressed among others, the issue of drug trafficking. Other multinational agreements, particularly the relevant UN resolutions regarding this issue were not raised or promoted at this time.

To date, this is the bulk of France's work on the fight against drugs. According to our compliance criteria, this does not represent adequate government initiative to warrant a positive grade. France therefore receives a grade of 0 for transnational organized crime.

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