Sunday, June 25, 2006

China faces pincer attack of drug from Golden Triangle, Afghanistan

People's Daily Online

China is facing pincer attack of narcotics from neighboring Golden Triangular region and Afghanistan with an increasing inflow of "ice" and heroin from the regions, an anti-drug official said on Thursday.

The northern region of Myanmar at the "Golden Triangle" is still the main source of drugs and poses the biggest menace to China, said Chen Cunyi, deputy secretary-general of the National Narcotics Control Commission.

"Although the planted area of opium poppy in the Golden Triangle has reduced, most of the heroin produced in the region is trafficked to China," Chen said at a press conference of the Information Office of the State Council.

He said the production and smuggling of new drugs such as methamphetamine, or "ice", have been increasing in recent years. Many regions in China have reported finds of "ice" produced in Myanmar.

A total of 2.6 tons of "ice" were seized in southwest China's Yunnan Province in 2005, up 154 percent over the previous year, the highest figure in history, said Chen.

Chen also warned that there is a growing threat of drug trafficking from the Golden Crescent region of central Asia, especially Afghanistan.

The acreage sown to poppy in Afghanistan in 2005 was about 104,000 hectares, and the opium yield reached 4,100 tons, accounting for 87 percent of the world total, Chen said.

In China, police in Xinjiang, Beijing, Guangdong and other places have ferreted out trafficking cases involving Afghan heroin, he said.

In addition, ketamine from India and Southeast Asian countries as well as cocaine from South America were seized in China occasionally. About 55 percent of the 2.6 tons of ketamine seized in China last year came from India, Chen said.

In November 2005 and March 2006, more than 300 kilograms and 140 kilograms of cocaine from South America were seized respectively in China, Chen added.


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