Baku, Azerbaijan, March 18
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
Number of drug-addicted females in Iran has increased by 200 percent in the past 2-3 years, the country's Interior Minister and Secretary General of the Anti-Narcotics Campaign Headquarters Abdol Reza Rahmani Fazli said, Iranian Fars news agency reported on March 18.
The Family Commission has been established in the Anti-Narcotics Campaign Headquarters to support addicted people's family, Rahmani Fazli said, adding that the commission will operate more actively in the next Iranian calendar year (to start on March 21).
About 9.3 percent of the 1.325 million drug addicts in Iran are women, with the youngest being anywhere from 15 to 19 years of age, according to the Anti-Narcotics Campaign Headquarters advisor on women and family affairs, Zahra Bonyanian.
Rahmani Fazli pointed to the seizure of more than 500 tons of narcotics in Iran during first eleven months of the current Iranian year (started on March 21, 2013), and said, the figure indicates an increase by 10 percent compared to the same period of last year.
He remarked that some 80 percent of the world's opium seizures took place in Iran in 2013, adding that Iran is located in Afghanistan's neighborhood, which ranks first in the world in terms of opium production.
Rahmani Fazli said that Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps` (IRGC) Ground Forces will undertake control of border roads by the next year, to control narcotic smuggling into the country.
According to the official estimates, the fight against drugs annually costs Iran about $1 billion.
Strategies pursued by Tehran include digging canals, building barriers and installing barbed wire to seal the country's borders, especially in the East.
Iran has recently established a central database and strengthened police-judiciary cooperation in a new effort to combat organized crime.
Every year, Iran burns more than 60 tons of seized narcotics as a symbol of its determination to fight drugs.
Edited by C.N.