Afghanistan exports 93 per cent opiates via Pakistan

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Peshawar, June 27 : North West Frontier Province's (NWFP) Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) chief Brigadier Parvez Khalid Babar has said that Afghanistan exports 93 per cent of illicit opiates to the world via Pakistan and, it is not possible to keep the 2500-kilometre-long Pak-Afghan border under vigil due to lack of resources.

It is impossible to prevent the flow of illicit opiates from Afghanistan as the ANF still lacks resources to counter drug mafia at Pak-Afghan border, Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and NWFP.

Addressing a programme organised by the ANF in NWFP in connection with World Anti Narcotics Day, Babar said the greatest beneficiaries to the illicit drugs' export were militants in both Afghanistan and Pakistan's FATA.

He said that terrorism and drugs were interlinked and militants were greatly benefiting from drugs' exportation from Afghanistan to Pakistan and to the rest of the world but with the efforts of the ANF, Pakistan is now on top of the drug demand reduction countries of the world.

He informed currently there are 500,000 heroin addicts in Pakistan. Pakistan is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1961 UN Single Convention as amended by the 1972 Protocol, and the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances.

The United States provides counter-narcotics and law enforcement assistance to Pakistan under a Letter of Agreement (LOA). This LOA provides terms and funding for cooperation in border security, poppy eradication, narcotics law enforcement, and drug demand reduction efforts, he said according to the Daily Times.

There is no mutual legal assistance treaty between the US and Pakistan, nor does Pakistan have a mutual legal assistance law and has not been helpful with US requests. The US and Pakistan's extradition agreement is carried out under the terms of the 1931 US-UK Extradition Treaty, which continued in force after Pakistan gained independence in 1947.

Pakistan's federal government struggled this year to contain and eradicate poppy in the FATA agencies where both the Pakistani Army and the Frontier Corps NWFP (FCN) are combating militancy. Both the FCN and Frontier Corps Balochistan (FCB) remain frequently engaged with militants and have limited resources to combat poppy cultivation, he added.

ANI

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