3 July 2012, 21:20

Anti-drug fight - a global priority

Anti-drug fight - a global priority
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The fact that heroin and cocaine kill 200,000 people annually shows that the international community is losing the war on drugs, chief of Russia’s drug control agency Viktor Ivanov announced on Tuesday, summing up the results of his Latin American tour and the anti-drug conference in Peru.

Leading countries of the world should create a united front to curb transnational threats represented by Afghan heroine and Latin American cocaine. Concerted actions by Russia, the United States, the European Union, and South American nations would make it easier to achieve the important task of getting the United Nations to recognize drug production as a threat to peace and security along with terrorism and sea piracy.

"The United Nations declared sea piracy that has claimed hundreds of lives a threat to peace and security," said Viktor Ivanov.

During the G20 summit in Mexico last month, Russian President Vladimir Putin pinpointed the need for consolidated international efforts against drugs and drug money. It is no longer a secret to anyone that apart from being a lethal poison that killed millions of people in the past and will kill many more in the future, drugs are also an instrument of international politics. The drug mafia reaps about $500 billion in annual profits. The situation in Central Asian and African countries accounting for key drug supply routes is permanently unstable, which plays into the hands of drug dealers. Proceeds from drug trafficking and illicit drug sales are used to finance terrorist activities.

The drug threat has assumed so disastrous proportions that it requires immediate action. Viktor Ivanov:

"The past seven years saw a shift in cocaine trafficking from the northern direction across the Atlantic towards Europe through West and North Africa, and then towards Russia. This circumstance imparts additional significance to cooperation between Russia and Latin American countries. According to our estimates, there are up to five tons of Latin American cocaine on the Russian market. Last year we conducted a joint operation to cut off a cocaine supply channel from Brazil to Russia. The operation involved special services of Russia, Brazil, France and Ukraine."

The Russian anti-drug agency will open special training courses for their colleagues in Bolivia, Colombia, Peru and Ecuador under bilateral agreements with those countries. In May, Russian anti-drug officers delivered a series of lectures in Nicaragua. The experience was a success.

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