L’OTAN ENVISAGE LA LÉGALISATION DE L’OPIUM AFGHAN

L’échec de la guerre à la drogue en Afghanistan oblige l’OTAN à réfléchir à la légalisation de la production  locale d’opium…

Date : 27 mars 2007
Source : Der Spiegel
Lien : http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,473933,00.html

[traduction partielle de PAMF]

Malgré les efforts internationaux visant à
éradiquer la production d’opium en Afghanistan se
sont révélés stériles. Et l’insurrection talibane
en est la principale bénéficiaire. Plusieurs
gouvernements européens envisagent l’idée d’une
légalisation du commerce de cette drogue,
rapporte le magazine allemand Der Spiegel.

"Les gouvernements à Berlin, Paris et Rome, avec
les dirigeants de l’OTAN, sont en train de
débattre d’une nouvelle idée potentiellement
explosive : la légalisation de la production
d’opium afghan. Le plan envisage que les fermiers
puissent vendre leur pavot aux acheteurs
officiellement autorisés pour un prix similaire à
celui qu’ils

obtiennent actuellement des barons de la drogue.
Le produit pourrait alors être vendu à
l’industrie pharmaceutique pour des médicaments
antidouleur et d’autres produits", dit le rapport.

 

L’article en VO :

March 27, 2007

THE POPPY PROBLEM

NATO to Legalize Afghanistan’s Opium?

Despite efforts to eradicate Afghanistan’s opium
production, the problem keeps getting worse. And
the Taliban insurgency is the primary
beneficiary. Now, some European governments are
weighing a legalization of the drug trade.

Corruption. Crime. Addiction. And money for the
Islamist Taliban insurgency. The list of ills
engendered by opium and heroin production in
Afghanistan is long. So too is the list of buyers
— the country accounts for over 90 percent of
all opium produced on the planet. And
international efforts to cut that output have
proven fruitless.

But a change of strategy may be on the horizon.
Governments in Berlin, Paris and Rome, along with
NATO leadership are discussing a potentially
explosive new idea: the legalization of
Afghanistan’s opium production. The plan
envisages farmers being able to sell their
poppies to officially licensed buyers for the
same price they currently get from the drug
barons. The product could then be sold to the
pharmaceutical industry for pain medication and
other products.

"We are not bringing drug cultivation under
control with the concepts we have had up to now,"
a NATO general responsible for Afghanistan told
SPIEGEL.

A quick glance at production statistics proves
the general’s point. The UN Office on Drugs and
Crime (UNODC) found that the amount of raw opium
produced in Afghanistan in 2006 had increased by
49 percent over the previous year to around 6,100
tons. Much of the proceeds — an estimated $3
billion — are pumped back into the Taliban, as
the Islamists continue to gain ground against
NATO and US forces in the southern part of the
country.

Worse, battling opium production is made more
difficult by the country’s instability. Zalmai
Afzali, a spokesman for Afghanistan’s Ministry of
Counter Narcotics told Reuters earlier this
month: "If we do not have peace in the coming
months, we will probably end up with another boom
in opium production for 2007."

The UN also suspects that many in the Afghan
government may be complicit in the opium trade.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s brother is
likewise suspect.

So far, the coalition forces and the Afghan
government have focused on trying to eradicate
the poppies used to produce opium and heroin and
attempting to convince poor farmers to plant
something else. The US likewise prefers
destroying poppy crops. The strategy, though, has
served to force many desperate farmers into the
arms of the Taliban.

Legalization, though, could pose its own risks.
Critics of the plan warn that as long as some
members of the state apparatus are in the pay of
the drug barons, the legalized cultivation of
poppies could just serve to increase their income.

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