West Africa’s Cocaine Corridor: Building a Subregional Response

Boats in West Africa. (Photo: Senya Beraku)

West Africa has once again become a major route for Latin American cocaine to European markets. Criminal networks leverage growing regional  instability to facilitate their work. Authorities in Africa and Europe have the capacity to physically screen less than 2% of containers moving through their ports. Drug seizures therefore rely instead on intelligence.  Widespread corruption and uneven regulations in West African ports creates surveillance gaps. Regional initiatives have sought to strengthen regional cooperation and intelligence sharing, but governments should first target specific, problematic trafficking routes.

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Security Topics:  Combating Organized Crime   Counter Narcotics