Media, Terrorism and Drug Policy, they pretend they dont get it!
Profits from opium cultivation are fuelling the insurgency in Afghanistan, the United Nations said yesterday, in a new call on Nato to crack down on the country's burgeoning drugs trade.
Releasing the final draft of its 2007 Afghan opium survey which in August already showed a surge in production, the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) said the total export value of opiates in Afghanistan stood at about $4 billion ($NZ5.35 billion).
Farmers saw around a quarter of that total, while district officials took a percentage through a levy on the crops. The rest was shared among insurgents, warlords and drugs traffickers, it said.
"The potential windfall for criminals, insurgents and terrorists is staggering and runs into the hundreds of millions of dollars," UNODC Executive Director Antonio Maria Costa said in a statement released in Brussels.
"Since drugs are funding the insurgency, Nato has a self-interest in supporting Afghan forces in destroying drugs labs, markets and convoys. Destroy the drug trade and you cut off the Taliban's main funding source ."