NATO, U.S. planes trafficking Afghan narcotics, Iran says

August 24, 2020 - 17:13

TEHRAN – Brigadier General Eskandar Momeni, Secretary-General of the Islamic Republic of Iran Drug Control Headquarters, has said that according to credible information, NATO and U.S. aircraft are trafficking narcotics from Afghanistan.

Iran is definitely dealing honestly with all kinds of drugs, and this is a necessity that has been done over the last four decades, he highlighted.

In 2000, the total production of narcotics in Afghanistan was about 200 tons, which in 2017 reached more than 9,000 tons, an increase of nearly 50 times, he lamented.

“According to credible information, NATO and U.S. planes are trafficking drugs from our neighboring country, so while we continue to fight smuggling, there is no way but to prioritize the prevention approach.”

According to Momeni, about 500 tons of drugs were discovered in the first five months of this year, which has increased by 30 percent compared to the same period last year.

Iran seized some 1,000 tons of narcotics in the previous Iranian calendar year (ended March 20), putting the country in the first place in the world, Momeni said in July.

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has praised Iran’s efforts to fight against narcotics trafficking on the occasion of International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.

The organization also officially announced that the world’s first place in the discovery of opium, heroin, and morphine belongs to Iran.

According to UNODC, Iran remains one of the major transit routes for drug trafficking from Afghanistan to European countries and has had a leading role at the global level in the drug-control campaigns.

UNODC World Drug Report 2020 estimates that in 2018, 91 percent of world opium, 48 percent of the world morphine, and 26 percent of the world heroin were seized by Iran.

Iran’s drug control efforts led to the seizure of 266 tons of different types of drugs during the period of April-June 2020, a 20 percent increase compared to the same period in 2019.

During the COVID-19 pandemic in Iran, Drug Control Headquarters provided and distributed Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and other sanitary commodities among street users and NGOs working with drug users.

In the end, the anti-narcotic police and law enforcement of Iran held a burning ceremony of 90 tons of different types of drugs in provinces of Sistan-Baluchestan, Kerman, and West Azarbaijan, televised through the internet.

After the Islamic Revolution (in 1979), 3,800 were martyred, 12,000 were wounded and disabled in the fight against drug trafficking, Momeni announced.

Drug use is a complex health and social problem worldwide, with half a million people dying each year as a result of drug abuse, he lamented, adding, drug use has entered a critical condition, and the international community is determined to tackle the global drug problem.