In the past five years the number of people using heroin in Afghanistan has risen 140 percent, and opium addiction has gone up by over 50 percent, according to a new drug survey by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).
About one million Afghans - 8 percent of the population aged 15-64 - are addicted to drugs: 120,000 to heroin and 230,000 to opium, said the survey released on 21 June.
“After three decades of war-related trauma, unlimited availability of cheap narcotics and limited access to treatment have created a major, and growing, addiction problem in Afghanistan,” Antonio Maria Costa, UNODC’s executive director, said in a press release.
Afghanistan is the world’s top narcotics producing country and illicit drug money, UNODC says, fuels armed insurgency and criminality.
This article was produced by IRIN News while it was part of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Please send queries on copyright or liability to the UN. For more information: https://shop.un.org/rights-permissions
It was The New Humanitarian’s investigation with the Thomson Reuters Foundation that uncovered sexual abuse by aid workers during the Ebola response in the Democratic Republic of Congo and led the World Health Organization to launch an independent review and reform its practices.
This demonstrates the important impact that our journalism can have.
But this won’t be the last case of aid worker sex abuse. This also won’t be the last time the aid sector has to ask itself difficult questions about why justice for victims of sexual abuse and exploitation has been sorely lacking.
We’re already working on our next investigation, but reporting like this takes months, sometimes years, and can’t be done alone.
The support of our readers and donors helps keep our journalism free and accessible for all. Donations mean we can keep holding power in the aid sector accountable, and shine a light on similar abuses.