Iran offers Afghanistan help to combat drug trafficking

May 21st, 2008 - 9:58 pm ICT by admin  

Kabul, May 21 (IANS) Iran has announced its readiness to cooperate with Afghan government and the international community to combat drug trafficking, which is the main source of revenue for the insurgents in the war-torn country, official IRNA news agency reported Wednesday. “Iran is ready to cooperate with the government of Afghanistan as well as the international community in the anti-drug campaign,” Iran’s Ambassador to Afghanistan Fada-Hossein Maleki said here Tuesday.

He made the remarks in a meeting with executive director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), Antonio Maria Costa.

During the meeting, the two officials expressed their concern over increase in poppy cultivation and consumption of hashish in Afghanistan and drug trafficking from Afghanistan to its neighbouring states.

The two officials also called for rendering more assistance to the Afghan government to implement development projects and the anti-drug campaign.

According to a 2007 UN report, Afghanistan is on the top of the list of 20 countries producing opium in the world.

There are one million drug addicts in the country and the drugs produced in Afghanistan in 2007 well exceeded world demand by as much as 3,000 tonnes, according to the report.

The reports also showed that in addition to supplying 90 percent of world opium Afghanistan has become the world’s biggest supplier of cannabis with cultivation is estimated at 70,000 hectares this year.

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