ISLAMABAD: Some 39 drug foreigner drugs smugglers hailing from Far East Asian, South Asian, European and African countries had been held by the Anti Narcotics Force from January to mid September this year.
A UN report in 2012 stated that Pakistan could be free of poppy cultivation, but the country still provided a vital transit route for smuggling of drugs worth $30 billion from neighbouring Afghanistan. As per report, $27 to $30 billion worth of drugs are smuggled from Afghanistan, via Pakistan, to other parts of the world annually; of this, drugs worth $1.5 billion stay in Pakistan
Official documents exclusively available with this scribe revealed that majority of the detained foreigner drugs smugglers were held for having heroine while second major narcotics recovered from the detainees was cocaine. Some 37 foreigner narcotics traffickers were arrested in last year and most of them were held with heavy cache of heroine. The held drug traffickers hailed from Philippine, Turkey, Zambia, Nigeria, United Kingdom, Afghanistan, Mali, Guinea, South Africa, Netherlands, Afghanistan and Nepal.
More than one third of the detained drugs traffickers had been held from Benazir Bhutto International Air Port Islamabad and surrounding areas of the Rawalpindi while second largest number of drugs smugglers was captured from Allama Iqbal International Airport Lahore and adjacent localities.
The documents further informed that under the banner of Drug Abuse Prevention Resource Centre project funded by USAID and supervised by PNCB several initiatives had been taken including, creating mass awareness against drug abuse, community participation in drug demand reduction, establishment of model addiction treatment and rehabilitation centers (MATRC), making drug free city, Lahore and setting up detoxification centre at Adiyala Jail Rawalpindi. It is pertinent to note here that one-third of drugs produced in Afghanistan are smuggled to other countries via the coastal areas of Balochistan.
According to a report prepared by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) at least 5% of the world’s adult population, or about 230 million people, are estimated to have used an illicit drug at least once a year. Some $68 billion is generated globally from illicit drugs annually, and is mainly used in terrorist activities, human trafficking and the smuggling of arms.
Interestingly, drug abuse and illicit trafficking continue to have a profoundly negative impact on development and stability across the world. Heroin, cocaine and other drugs continue to kill around 200,000 people a year, bringing misery to thousands of other peoples, insecurity and the spread of HIV/ AIDS