World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Afghanistan's Drug Economy Is Fuelling Terrorism


Afghanistan's Drug Economy Is Fuelling Terrorism

Surging opium production in Afghanistan is contributing to instability and even terror campaigns in the war-ravaged country, the United Nations' most senior anti-drugs official said today on the eve of an international conference on the issue.

"The fight against terrorism will be more effective if drug trafficking is interrupted," said Antonio Maria Costa, the Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), citing "mounting evidence of drug money being used to finance criminal activities, including terrorism."

The UN reports that opium production has continued to grow in Afghanistan - by far the world's biggest poppy producer - despite several positive anti-drug steps by authorities recently.

A survey released by UNODC in October showed that Afghanistan's estimated opium production rose 6 per cent last year from 3,400 tons to 3,600 tons. Opium is now cultivated in 28 of the country's 32 provinces, up from 18 provinces in 1999.

A more recent survey of Afghan farmers' intentions for 2004 has revealed that the area under opium poppy cultivation could increase further this year. Already about 1.7 million Afghans, or 7 per cent of the population, are thought to be involved in the industry.

"If we don't start translating counter-narcotics commitment into lower levels of production, we run the risk of [an] opium economy undermining all that has been achieved in creating a democratic new Afghanistan," Mr. Costa warned.

In addition to addressing the International Conference on Counter-Narcotics in Afghanistan, being held in Kabul on Sunday and Monday, Mr. Costa will hold direct talks with leading Afghan officials.

In today's remarks, he hailed several government measures, including Afghanistan's new anti-drug laws and the adoption of the National Drug Control Strategy, which aims to completely eliminate opium production within 10 years.

Mr. Costa also urged international security forces operating in Afghanistan to interdict narco-trafficking chains and clandestine laboratories.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Demonetisation: Gordon Campbell On India’s Huge Socio-Economic Experiment

Without much coverage at all in the West, India has just been engaged for the past few weeks in one of the world’s biggest socio-economic experiments since the Cultural Revolution in China. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Death Of Fidel Castro

New Zealand likes to think we played our part – via the 1981 Springbok tour – in bringing the apartheid regime in South Africa to an end… Jacob Zuma treated the death of Fidel Castro at the weekend as an occasion to pay a heartfelt tribute to the thousands of Cuban soldiers who travelled across the world to inflict the first significant military defeat on the forces of white supremacy. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The US Election Home Stretch

Once again at the business end of a US election, the result will hinge on the same old bits of geography as always: the Five Crucial Counties in Ohio, the Two Crucial Counties in Pennsylvania and the I-4 Interstate Corridor in Florida that runs from Tampa Bay through Orlando to Daytona Beach. More>>

ALSO:

Meanwhile:

Haiti: $5 Million To Kick-Start Aid In Wake Of Hurricane Matthew

UN emergency fund allocates $5 million to kick-start assistance in wake of Hurricane Matthew More>>

ALSO:

Preliminary Results: MH17 Investigation Report

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is convinced of having obtained irrefutable evidence to establish that on 17 July 2014, flight MH-17 was shot down by a BUK missile from the 9M38-series. According to the JIT there is also evidence identifying the launch location that involves an agricultural field near Pervomaiskyi which, at the time, was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. More>>

ALSO:

Not Helen Clark: António Guterres Favourite For Next UN Secretary-General

Former Portuguese Prime Minister António Guterres has emerged as the clear favourite to become the next United Nations Secretary-General following the sixth secret ballot held today by the UN Security Council, which is expected to take a formal decision tomorrow and forward Mr. Guterres’ name to the 193-Member General Assembly for final confirmation. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news