Tehran, Kabul boosting drug control ties
Iran and Afghanistan are prepared to enhance bilateral cooperation to combat narcotics, announced the Iranian Drug Control Headquarters' Director General for treatment and social support, Mohammad Baqer Saberi Zafarqandi, Iran Daily reported with reference to Mehr News Agency.
"The two countries, making efforts to exchange experiences, can implement joint plans and hold training workshops in the fields of drug addiction and mental health," Zafarqandi said in the closing ceremony of a training workshop on "Drug Abuse Treatment With Focus on Agonist Medication".
He stated that Iran and Afghanistan face similar problems. "However, this provides an opportunity for using their utmost ability for resolving these problems. On the other hand, some try to misuse this opportunity and create enmity between Iran and Afghanistan," he said.
The Iranian official also said the two countries should devise comprehensive programs for controlling drugs and providing mental healthcare services.
Zafarqandi hoped that all regional countries, especially Iran and Afghanistan, would successfully resolve the problem of addiction in the not-too-distant future.
Afghan Ambassador in Tehran Abdollah Abied appreciated efforts made by the Iranian government for supporting the Afghan people in the war years.
"Visiting drug rehabilitation centers and using Iran's experiences would certainly be fruitful for Afghan specialists," he said.
He said all countries are facing the problem of addiction, adding that narcotics have become a global dilemma and a transnational campaign should be created by regional countries to combat drugs.
Abied said all countries should cooperate and acquire enough knowledge and skills for fighting narcotics.
According to UN figures, the Islamic Republic makes over 80 percent of all opium seizures in the world.
Iran has spent billions of dollars and lost more than 3,500 of its security forces since the Islamic Revolution in 1979 in its war against illegal drugs and the death merchants.