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    US' $8.5 Billion Campaign to Fight Drugs in Afghanistan a 'Failure', Moscow Says

    © AFP 2017/ Bay Ismoyo
    Asia & Pacific
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    The US anti-drug campaign in Afghanistan, on which Washington spent $8.5 billion, has failed: the production of drugs in that country is still high, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement Friday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Citing the recommendation of US Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction John Sopko, the ministry said that the United States should develop its anti-drug strategy in Afghanistan.

    "John Sopko's information about the $8.5 billion spent by Washington on the anti-drug campaign in Afghanistan points directly to its failure: drug production in Afghanistan beats records, and the country remains the world's largest producer and exporter of opium," it said.

    Afghanistan, which has long been in turmoil due to the simmering militant insurgency, is one of the major drug-producing countries in the world.

    It was reported in 2015 by Russia’s Federal Narcotics Control Service that the drugs from Afghanistan generate profits estimated at $150 billion annually for the people involved in the operations with them. Large shipments of Afghan heroin were said to be transited into the Balkan states and on into the European Union.

    The UN International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) reported in 2010 that nearly 90% of all drug addicts in Russia use opiates, and primarily heroin, which is produced entirely in Afghanistan. There are an estimated 1.68 million opiate users in Russia.

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    failure, traffic, drugs, Afghanistan, United States
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