Basij Commander Urges 'National Movement' against Narcotics
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Commander of Iran's Basij (volunteer) Force Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Naqdi on Thursday asked for a national movement against narcotic drugs trafficking and abuse.
Naqdi, who was speaking at a provincial meeting in the western city of Malayer on Thursday, pointed to the very low prices of illicit drugs in Iran, and warned that addiction is a plot hatched against the Iranian nation.
Referring to remarks made by the Supreme Leader against narcotics, he said addiction is an "organized phenomenon and a war aimed at undermining the Iranian nation."
The Iranian commander further said the key for the success in the campaign against narcotics is to use people’s power, and stressed that all walks of life should participate in anti-narcotics efforts.
In recent decades Iran has been hit by drug trafficking, mainly because of its 936- kilometers of shared borders with Afghanistan, which supplies over 90% of the world's opium; the raw ingredient of heroin.
The United Nations has estimated in the past that opium trafficking accounts for up to 15 percent of Afghanistan’s gross domestic product, but the figure is expected to rise as international military and development spending declines with the NATO withdrawal at the end of 2014.
Iran is on a major transit route for drugs smuggled from Afghanistan to Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and the country's war on drug-traffickers has claimed the lives of nearly 4,000 Iranian police forces over the past 34 years.
According to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, Iran is netting eight times more opium and three times more heroin than all other countries in the world combined.