UNGASS Special Segment Day 1 – Statement by Afghanistan

Ministry of Counternarcotics recently initiated new efforts. Amendment of the Counternarcotics Law. Recently proposed new national drug control strategy to the President, which aligned the counternarcotics planning with the counterinsurgency initiatives. Prevent the cultivation of poppy and maximize the drug seizure rate. Designed the mainstreaming of drug demand reduction in public health packages. Also academically institutionalized in higher education soon to be submitted to President for approval.

Development of counternarcotics district based national program. Implementation of poppy cultivation prevention. Only 35% of all the districts produce poppy meaning we have successfully controlled poppy cultivation in 65% of the districts. The focus needs to be on these districts. New national program is to reduce more than 90% of cultivation in the coming ten years.

Issues and challenges:
Today is the day to divert our discussion towards more practical ways to address the problem based on unique ground realities. Face the failure in eliminating the opium economy unless we change our approach. Requires comprehensive and integrated response at all levels. Our forums and meeting have produced documents but the outcomes are a booming opium economy. It has become a political blame game. Sustainable achievements on counternarcotics are a challenge. Responses are not interlinked for a sustainable outcomes. Depends on the international community to align their resource with our local understanding of the problem. Propose a holistic approach to regional collaboration including drug demand reduction and strategic communication. Afghanistan cannot alone bear the burden of eliminating the opium economy. Propose a milestone in the UNGASS to announce a counternarcotics decade to eliminate the opium economy. Committed to the elimination of the opium economy. Requests participants to stand for genuine shared responsibility to combat the illicit drug trade in Afghanistan and beyond the region.

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