Iran sets new record in narcotics seizure
Iranian police have seized more than 340 tons of drugs throughout the country during the past nine months, a senior Iranian commander says.
"More than 340 tons of drugs have been seized all over Iran in the past nine months," IRNA quoted the commander of the drug squad, General Hamid Reza Hossein-Abadi, as saying on Thursday.
"Over 25 tons of the seized drugs were heroin and morphine," he went on to say.
"According to official statistics, more than 80 percent of the drugs were seized in eight border provinces, especially in the country's eastern borders," he further explained.
Hossein-Abadi also pointed out that the Iranian police have so far arrested 170,000 drug dealers in various parts of the country.
Iran lies on a transit corridor between opium producers in Afghanistan and drug dealers in Europe.
Iranian police officials maintain that drug production in Afghanistan has had a 40-fold increase since the US-led invasion of the country in 2001.
While Afghanistan produced only 185 tons of opium per year under the Taliban, according to UN statistics, since the US-led invasion, drug production has surged to 3,400 tons annually. In 2007, the opium trade reached an estimated all-time production high of 8,200 tons.
Afghan and Western officials blame Washington and NATO for the change, saying the allies have 'overlooked' the drug problem for the seven years since the invasion of the country.
The United Nations credits Iran with the seizure of 80 percent of the opium netted around the world in 2007.
comment: I believe the Iranian goverment largely controls the press so replaced the www with xxx in the link. Maybe not a government site per se but...
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