Vienna, 26 June 2015 - In his very first meeting with the new Afghan Minister of Counter Narcotics, Salamat Azimi, Mr. Fedotov said UNODC advocated robust action against the criminals involved in drug trafficking in Afghanistan, while working hard to provide greater opportunities for farmers and other small traders.
Mr. Fedotov said he welcomed the 100-day drug control plan of the Minister, as well as the recent launch of the Afghanistan Drug Reporting System created through a joint partnership between UNODC and the Ministry of Counter Narcotics. The tool, he said, was the first interactive online system for all counter-narcotics' related data in Afghanistan.
In his discussions with the Minister, Mr. Fedotov noted that Afghanistan is the primary victim of illicit drug cultivation and suffers high numbers of drug users, crime, insecurity and corruption. He stated that UNODC will continue to support Afghanistan and to build greater regional cooperation through bodies such as the Joint Planning Cell operated under the umbrella of the Triangular Initiative, and the Central Asia Regional Information and Coordination Centre (CARICC).
But, Mr. Fedotov said it was also important for Afghanistan to show measurable and concrete results in the reduction of the number of drug users, as well as opium cultivation and production. Mr. Fedotov stated that alternative development in Afghanistan was essential to reduce the vulnerabilities of poor farmers to illicit drug cultivation. He also offered the Minister his firm support for gender-related drug programmes in Afghanistan, including programmes that raised public awareness about this vital issue.
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