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Russia cannot rely on NATO in fight against drug trafficking — drug control service chief

March 25, 2014, 11:27 UTC+3 MOSCOW
“We can resolve this global problem only through joint efforts of a bigger number of industrialized countries,” Viktor Ivanov says
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A British military patrols near a poppy field in Afghanistan (archive)

A British military patrols near a poppy field in Afghanistan (archive)

© AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool

MOSCOW, March 25. /ITAR-TASS/. Head of Russia’s Federal Drug Control Service has expressed confidence that in the global fight against drug trafficking, Russia can rely only on BRICS nations and states neighboring drug producing regions, but not on NATO.

“We can resolve this global problem only through joint efforts of a bigger number of industrialized countries,” Viktor Ivanov told a meeting of the expert community in the run-up to a ministerial meeting of heads of anti-drug agencies. “Of course, I speak of G8 member-states, but as experience proves we need to really rely, first of all, on BRICS nations — Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa — and countries neighboring drug producing regions free of obligations and secret decisions of NATO’s military and political bureau.”

He recalled that for fourteen years since the launch of the US-led Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan over one million people in Eurasia, half of them Russian citizens, died of Afghan heroin.

Intensive transit of drugs from Afghanistan estimated at $80 billion a year contributed to a growth of paramilitary drug trafficking groups, a surge of violence and involvement of several millions of residents of the region into this process, Ivanov said, adding that in general, this deformed the political landscape of countries of Central Asia, the Caucasus and the Middle East.

 

“G8 format liquidation — NATO’s unwillingness to bear responsibility for drug production increase in Afghanistan”

Viktor Ivanov regards the liquidation of the G8 format as NATO’s unwillingness to bear responsibility for the growth of drug production in Afghanistanе.

“Our expert meeting initially was being prepared in a format of consultations of top experts on the issue of alternative development for addressed expert provision of Russia’s presidency in G8. However, upon the G8 partners’ initiative this format has been unilaterally destroyed, and, as you already know, yesterday at a reduced G7session in The Hague, US and NATO focus on Russia’s isolation has been confirmed,” Ivanov noted at an expert community meeting organized for preparing the ministerial meeting of heads of drug control watchdogs.

Ivanov drew attention to the fact that the liquidation of the G8 format by western countries occurred at the same moment when Russia within the framework of its G8 presidency named the issue of fighting drug trafficking as the main priority.

“This cannot be considered otherwise as a radical method of the USA and NATO to avoid shouldering responsibility for the 40-fold explosive growth of drug production in Afghanistan since the moment of occupation of this long-suffering country by US and NATO troops in 2001,” Ivanov stressed.

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