Welcoming Afghanistan’s new ban on all opium poppy cultivation, the United Nations Office for Drug Control and Crime Prevention (ODCCP) today said the prohibition represented a “very important step” in international efforts to control the illicit narcotics trade.
In a statement released in Vienna, ODCCP pledged to work closely with the Afghan Interim Administration to ensure that drug control receives priority attention in the months and years ahead. The Office also underscored the need for international support for Afghanistan’s efforts to implement the ban by using effective law enforcement and promoting alternative crop development projects.
Although ODCCP has not been able to monitor the opium situation in Afghanistan since last year’s terrorist attacks against the United States, the Office is now preparing to conduct its annual opium poppy survey in Afghanistan. A pre-assessment study report is expected by the end of February, with the full survey to be completed by September.