Official: Growth in Afghan drug problem entails spread of terrorism to Iran

TEHRAN (FNA)- An undersecretary of Iran’s Drug-Combat Headquarters warned that growing drug-trafficking in Afghanistan has resulted in the spread of terrorism and organized crime to Iran.

“The revenues gained through the transit and trafficking of narcotics will increase organized crime and terrorism in Iran,” Taha Taheri said, addressing a conference on campaign against drug-trafficking attended by representatives of 12 countries and held in the Tajik capital of Dushanbe on Saturday.

He pointed to Iran’s hundreds of kilometers of shared border with Afghanistan, and said, “Countries which have common borders with Afghanistan can help that country to shift poppy cultivation and opium production to other (agro) products through appropriate security and economic plans and programs.”

Taheri reiterated that the main threat to Iran’s security and society is drug trafficking and transit of narcotics via Iran which inflicts massive human and financial losses on the country.

Earlier this year, Taheri had said that Iran is a major victim of the illicit drugs transited from Afghanistan to Europe since the country is the main transit route for the narcotics destined for the EU markets.

Addressing a meeting of anti-drug agencies of the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) member states here in Tehran in May, he called for serious confrontation against drug production and trafficking in ECO states.

He pointed to Iran’s all-out war on narcotics, and stressed that Tehran is spending heavily in the fight on narcotics and Iranian police forces seized 530 tons of different types of narcotics in 2012.

Eastern Iran borders Afghanistan, which is the world’s number one opium and drug producer. Iran’s geographical position has made the country a favorite transit corridor for drug traffickers who intend to smuggle their cargoes from Afghanistan to drug dealers in Europe.

Terrorist organizations in almost 30 countries now finance their activities, to a greater or lesser extent, through the highly profitable trade in prohibited drugs. In particular, drug trafficking has become increasingly important as a source of revenue for terrorist groups after the end of the Cold War.

Where the agricultural climate permitted, this could mean drug production and sales. Even if the climate and terrain were not suitable for the production of drugs, terrorist groups could nonetheless reap enormous profits from the sale of prohibited drugs.

By Fars News Agency 


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