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Afghan Opium Production Soaring Out of Control

The annual UN report on illegal drugs has said that opium production in Afghanistan is soaring out of control .

The World Drug Report says over 90 percent of illegal opium, which is used to make heroin, comes from Afghanistan.

According to a BBC report, the cultivation of opium poppies increased dramatically in the country, despite the presence of more than 30,000 international troops there, and adds that Afghanistan is unlikely to regain real security until the production of illegal drugs is tackled.

In the 1980s, Afghanistan produced some 30% of the world's opium, but now that figure has more than tripled, the UN document says.

It says that Helmand province alone cultivates almost half the world's illegal opium.

Thomas Pietschmann, the report's author, says production in Helmand is spread across 70,000 hectares.

The report says that while global co-ordination of drug law enforcement has improved, traffickers of heroin from Afghanistan and of cocaine from Colombia are now targeting new routes in Africa.


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