Drug Cartels Running Rampant

In its 127 page annual report, the UN’s International Narcotics Control Board {INCB} reported that governments across the world are failing to target cartels. Instead they are concentrating on small time users, which has led to the ‘rampant flow’ of drugs into fresh markets through new international trade routes.

For instance around 40% of the cocaine reaching Europe is shipped through longer established routes via the Caribbean. In 2006 Colombia accounted for 50% of the world coca cultivation, Peru 33%, Bolivia 17%. However the INCB report also found West Africa to be rapidly developing into a major drug smuggling route. Interpol estimates that 200-300 tonnes of cocaine from Latin America pass through such countries as Benin, CapeVerde, Mauritania and Senegal every year,then smuggled into Spain, Portugal and the UK.

The UN watchdog further states in its report that the illicit cultivation of opium poppies in Afghanistan has continued to increase ‘at a alarming level’. The total area use for illicit opium cultivation increased by 59% in 2006 and by a further 17% last year. That country now account for 93% of the global market in opiates – such as heroin, opium and morphine. Afghan opiates are smuggled to Iran, Pakistan and countries in Central Asia en route to Europe. Under article 14 of the UN  convention, the International Narcotics Control board can recommed an embargo against a country if its government fails to take remedial action to co-operate in the fight against drugs. As was taken against Afghanistan in 2000 when the Taliban was in power.

According to top UN drug enforcement offical in Afghan, Christina Oguz, the opium trade brings in about $4 billion each year to that country and that money makes the trafficking networks a powerful force in the improvished country. “The networks are powerful because these drug traders are linked to corrupt officials and to criminal networks outside Afghanistan.”

As of Europe, Britian appears to have the worst crack cocaine problem in Europe. “The abuse of crack cocaine continue to be marginal in all countries in Western Europe, with the possible exception of the UK” the report said.

{Adapted from International Press Reports}

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One Response to Drug Cartels Running Rampant

  1. Pingback: Afghanistan Opium Production Reaches 6,900 Tons « Bajan Global Report

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