Azerbaijani government announces data on number of drug addicts in country
Azerbaijan, Baku, June 22 /Trend, K.Zarbaliyeva/
The number of drug addicts has increased in Azerbaijan, said the deputy prime minister, chairman of the State Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and Illicit Trafficking in Narcotic Drugs Ali Hasanov.
"Azerbaijan is carrying out activities to combat drug trafficking. The law-enforcement agencies have seized a large quantity of drugs. Last year, the number of addicts has increased by 2,500 people. At present, there are about 26,000 registered drug addicts, but the actual number of addicts is much more than registered. Although drug addiction is not a particular problem in Azerbaijan, each member of society must combat it," said Hasanov.
According to him, last year, the Interior Ministry seized about two tons of drugs, National Security Ministry - one ton and 200 grams, the State Border Service (SBS) of Azerbaijan - more than 350 kg, the State Customs Committee - more than 300 kilograms. About 350 tons of drugs grown in a natural way were found and destroyed.
According to Hasanov, over the last 10 years, the total production of drugs increased by 78 percent.
"Over the last two - three years, there was a decrease in the production of some drugs. Production of cocaine has fallen by 16 percent, Afghan hashish - 19 percent. Despite this, the number of drug users in the world has increased to more than 300 million. Of them, 30 million are those who mainline, more than 20 million - the problematic drug users, about 250 million - are those who take drugs for the first time.
The main producers of cocaine are Peru, Colombia and Malaysia. Hashish is mainly produced in Afghanistan. Afghan drugs act primarily on markets in Russia and Western Europe. Price for one kilogram of Afghan drugs in the country worth $2,000, and the Western European market is already one kilogram of $44,300.
This shows that there is a demand for Afghan drugs on the Western European market. Afghan drugs are delivered to Azerbaijan as well. Through Azerbaijan drugs are delivered in three main routes: Afghanistan - Iran - Azerbaijan; Afghanistan - Pakistan - Iran - Azerbaijan; Afghanistan - Central Asia - Azerbaijan. There is the fourth route - it goes through the Nagorno-Karabakh territory via Iran, and the separatist regime in Nagorno-Karabakh territory exports drugs to Russia and Western Europe," said deputy prime minister.
Upon the UN decision, June 26 was declared International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.