Afghan Opium Production At ‘All Time High’ Following $7.6 Billion U.S. Counter-narcotics Campaign

Dees Illustration

Paul Lawrance
Activist Post

Cultivation of the poppy plant in Afghanistan has reached an “all time high” following the over decade long U.S. Counter-narcotics campaign, according to government oversight investigators.

“After a decade of reconstruction and over $7 billion in counter-narcotics efforts, poppy cultivation levels are at an all-time high,” the Special Investigator General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) concluded in its report released Wednesday.

The poppy plant is used to make drugs such as opium and heroin.

“According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), Afghan farmers grew an unprecedented 209,000 hectares of opium poppy in 2013, surpassing the previous peak of 193,000 hectares in 2007. With deteriorating security in many parts of rural Afghanistan and low levels of eradication of poppy fields, further increases in cultivation are likely in 2014,” the report read on.

The $7.6 billion dollars spent on the counter-narcotics campaign by the U.S. had the goal of developing an Afghan government counter-narcotics capacity, which the United States would aid in coordinating.

According to SIGAR’s report, despite the extremely expensive effort, opium production now far exceeds previous records.

Paul Lawrance writes for Eyes Open Report, where this first appeared.

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