Baku, Azerbaijan, Aug. 22
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
The Islamic Republic police seized some 240 metric tons of drugs in the first four months of the current Iranian fiscal year (March 21-July 22), Assadollah Hadinejad Deputy Head of Iran 's Anti-Drug Headquarters said.
He said that the figure indicates a slight increase compared to the same period of preceding year, Iran's official IRNA news agency reported Aug. 22.
Some 35 percent of drugs is smuggled via Iran route, Hadinejad said, expressing hope that the figure would decrease to 15 percent by March 2016, following measures on blockading Iran-Pakistan border.
He further said that about 60 percent of prisoners in Iran are in jail due to drug-related charges.
Iran is situated on a major drug route between Afghanistan and Europe, as well as the Gulf States. The Islamic Republic shares about 900 kilometers of common border with Afghanistan, over which 74 percent of opium is smuggled.
It was reported that some 490 metric tons of drugs were seized in the country during the last fiscal year (ended on March 20).
The fight against drugs annually costs Iran about $1 billion, according to the official estimates. The statistics also say there are about two million drug users in Iran.
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