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TOLOnews.com, April 13, 2011

Herat Addicts Rise to Over 70,000

Some of the main causes of addiction in Afghanistan are unawareness, poverty, unemployment and family problems

The number of drug addicts in the western Herat city has risen to over 70,000, provincial officials say.

Herat addicts mainly include jobless youths most of whom have returned from Iran.

They were addicted to drugs while living in the Islamic Republic of Iran, Governor of Herat said.

"Although there is no poppy cultivation in Herat, but the number of addicts in the province has risen because it is bordered by Iran," Governor of Herat, Dawood Saba, said.

herat_addicts_on_rise.jpg
TOLOnews.com, Apr. 13, 2011: A UN report in June 2010 described Afghanistan as a major consumer of opium and its derivatives. It said the number of regular opium users had increased by 53% while the number of heroin users had risen by 140% in comparison to 2005. Afghanistan is considered the source of about 90% of the world's opium. (Photo: TOLOnews.com)

The only medical facility for the treatment of addicts in Herat is a 150-bed hospital.

"We have more than 70,000 addicts in Herat and need many years to treat them. This is a big challenge from a security and economic point of view," Mr Saba said.

Some of the addicts call on the Afghan government to help them with their treatment.

"I was in Iran looking for work, I got addicted there and was deported. The government should treat us," one of the addicts, Ali feda, said.

Reza Ehsas is another addict who has been deported from Iran and lives a jobless life in Heart.

"We often get arrested, beaten and released. We do not want to be beaten, we want the government to treat us," Ehsas said.

Some of the main causes of addiction in Afghanistan are unawareness, poverty, unemployment and family problems.

A UN report in June 2010 described Afghanistan as a major consumer of opium and its derivatives.

It said the number of regular opium users had increased by 53% while the number of heroin users had risen by 140% in comparison to 2005.

Afghanistan is considered the source of about 90% of the world's opium.

Category: Drugs, HR Violations - Views: 7902


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