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Spring Operation Kicks off To Eradicate Poppy Fields

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Tuesday, April 17,2018
Kabul (BNA) Since a week, spring operation has been started in tropical provinces, where hundreds of jeribs of lands have so far been cleared of poppy.
The ministry of counternarcotic says that spring operation has already been begun in 24 provinces, aims at clearing the lands from poppy.
The ministry’s spokesperson Hanif Daneshyar told media poppy has mostly been cultivated in Helmand, where is not fully secured and we are not able to completely destroy the poppy fields.
According to him, based on primary reports, among these 24 provinces, poppy has mostly been cultivated in Helmand, where the Taliban have planted mines around the lands.
‘Unfortunately, once more, poppy has been cultivated in 24 provinces and we have faced with many problems in this regard particularly in Helmand province.
Thus, finally, it has been decided to eliminate the poppy lands where it is possible. But there were may restrictions in Helmand. In other provinces such as Kandahar, Nangarhar and many more, it is time to eradicate poppy fields, but we cannot do this as to considerably decrease its production rate,’ he went on to say.
This comes as over the last six months; the Afghan and foreign forces have jointly conducted airstrikes on narcotics processing factories and the operation has recently been expanded to eastern provinces.
The ministry of narcotics said foreign forces have not been involved in poppy fields’ eradication, but their airstrikes have imposed heavy blow on world mafia and Taliban factions.
NATO Resolute Support mission in Kabul said Taliban have changed into a mafia group, whom through obtained-money from narcotics, support their subversive activities. But, NATO’s air operation commander said by expansion of operations in four zones of the country, Taliban won’t have any secure place for poppy cultivation and production anymore.
At the same time, poppy fields eradication operation has recently been started in eastern Nangarhar province, where 1500 jeribs of lands have so far been cleared of poppy.
Head of Nangarhar narcotics department Edris Safi said, ‘Poppy fields eradication operation has been started in five districts and would soon be expanded in fourteen districts.’
Upper house of the parliament narcotics’ commission member, Hashim Alokozai believes the program won’t be effective to reduce poppy cultivation and production rate.
This is while that the Afghan people believe that the government step on eradication of poppy has not been considerably effective and they hope the government in cooperation with international community to seriously step up in the respect.
Shukria-Kohistani

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