Ministry of Health & Prevention chairs Higher Narcotic Drug Committee meeting to review lists of narcotics and psychotropic substances


H.E. Dr. Al Amiri: ‘The UAE is one of the leading countries in the fight against narcotics & psychotropic substances”

UAE, April 2, 2017 – In line with the requirements of the UAE Federal Law No. 14 of 1995 on the Counter Measures against Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances, the Higher Narcotic Drug Review Committee conducted a meeting at Dubai headquarters of the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention. The session was held under the chairmanship of H.E. Dr. Amin Hussein Al Amiri, Assistant Undersecretary for the Ministry’s Public Health Policy and Licensing Sector and the participation of representatives from the Ministry of Interior, the Directorate General for drug control, General Commanders of Dubai Police and Sharjah Police along with senior officials from the Federal Customs Authority, the Dubai Public Prosecution, the UAE Ministry of Justice, and the Dubai Courts.

H.E. Dr. Al Amiri emphasized that the UAE is one of the leading countries in combatting drugs, through its prompt update of status of any product scientifically proven as drug. He stated that the country has been able to fulfill its international obligations by ratifying all international conventions on narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances. He reaffirmed that the Ministry will continue to cooperate with competent authorities to protect society from the dangers of narcotic substances as they are health and economic burdens.

Restructure the Committee and Add Terms of Reference
The Assistant Undersecretary pointed out that the Committee approved all the recommendations of the previous meeting to amend some provisions of Federal Law No. 14 of 1995 on the Counter Measures against Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances and added new items to the lists. He said that it discussed the restructuring of the Committee, filed nominations for the UAE Minister of Health and Prevention, reviewed the terms of reference of the current Committee, and presented its achievements to the Executive Board of the Higher Narcotic Drug Review Committee.

Inclusion of Kerosene and Flax
The Committee discussed the inclusion of Cola Seeds, a fruit containing caffeine and other substances, as an activator along with the recommendation submitted by the Anti-Narcotics Department and decided to postpone the matter for further study and research. The committee also reviewed the recommendation of the Dubai Police’s General Department of Anti-Narcotics on the drug named Flax. The report by the General Department of Forensic and Criminology of the Dubai Police shows that Flax contains cathinone which has a psychological effect. Products of the same class of cathinone are listed in the category 5 of the Narcotics Law as well as in the List 1 of the United Nations List of the Convention on Psychotropic Substances. Therefore, the Committee has decided to include the item the List 5 of the Narcotics Law effective immediately. Drug contained in flax can affect the nervous system, leading to serious side effects, including hallucinations and loss of sensation, which in turn makes the person under the influence of severe anesthesia, which leads to severe damaging and may cause death.

Modified Status of Methamphetamine
The recommendation of the Federal Drug Control Administration was approved and according to data, Methamphetamine’s subtypes (amphetamine group) were transferred from Schedule 5 to 6. Members unanimously agreed with the recommendation of the Federal Drug Control Administration on the recommendation to promote certain items to higher THC and agreed on the need for further study for the sensitivity of the topic.

Substance Abuse
The Committee discussed the recommendations on the challenges and strategy for counteracting the abuse of psychotropic drugs. It has approved to include some of the new substances that have been banned globally to the lists attached to the Narcotics Law.

Control of Fast Shipping Companies and the Risk of Steroidal Drugs on Athletes
Lastly, the session reviewed the phenomenon of steroidal drugs in the sports centers and their danger to health as most of these materials enter the country through the fast shipping companies. Therefore, the Committee has decided to address the authorized bodies of these centers in coordination with the local health authorities to report about it to the Committee. The committee also emphasized the need for fast shipping companies to comply with the laws and decisions governing the import of medicines and medical equipment.

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