United States and Russia promises better communication in Future Afghan Drug Raids
March 24th, 2011
The United States has claimed today that it would attempt better communication with its partners during heroin raids in Afghanistan. For two years the U.S. has joined a co-operative effort with Russia to clamp down on heroin production in the country, which produces roughly 90 percent of the global total.
During a joint raid last October, the two countries captured and destroyed four Afghan heroin labs and encountered an estimated one metric ton of the drug near the Pakistani border. This move was criticized by Afghan President Hamid Karzai, who wanted his own country to take care of its problems. The United States has apologized and promised better communication between Afghanistan and Russia.
The conflict began when Russia began facing an HIV epidemic, caused by dirty needles used by the heroin addicts in the country, which estimated a 3 million total. Russia has been noted to be the world’s largest heroin consumer per capita with this total. Over a fifth of the 375 metric tons of heroin from Afghanistan is “imported” to Russia.
The strategy of stopping the importing problem has been noted as “Western” by many critics, due to the fact that they are attempting to stop the problem rather than inside. Russia’s anti-drug czar Viktor Ivanov has noted that Moscow and Washington, D.C. were planning more joint operations in the future.