Troops destroy 40 tons of Afghan hashish
KABUL (AFP) – Afghan and international troops dismantled an illegal drugs-making facility in southern Afghanistan and destroyed more than 40 tons of hashish Monday, the US Forces Afghanistan said.
The troops were combing an area "known for insurgent activities" in Spin Boldak district, on the border with Pakistan, when they made the discovery, it said in a statement.
"Today's discovery clearly demonstrated the links between the Taliban and drug trafficking," spokesman Colonel Greg Julian said in the statement.
"The huge amount of drugs destroyed today will greatly hinder the Taliban's ability to fund their ongoing, hopeless struggle to subjugate the Afghan people."
Afghanistan produces more than 90 percent of the world's opium, most of which is turned into heroin and exported, and is also the world's second largest producer of hashish after Morocco, according to the United Nations.
UN and Afghan officials say the drugs trade is supporting a Taliban-led insurgency, with rebels "taxing" farmers and also protecting trafficking routes and crops.
In June, Afghan anti-narcotics police seized and destroyed 237 tons of hashish in what was believed to be the biggest haul of its kind in the world.
The find was also in Spin Boldak district of southern Kandahar province and said to be worth around 400 million dollars.