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24 Aug, 2011 21:00

Russia’s anti-drugs chief calls for NATO clampdown in Afghanistan

NATO should be obliged to combat the drugs trade in Afghanistan if it wants to renew its mandate to stay in the country.

That is according to Viktor Ivanov, director of the Russian Federal Service for Control of Drugs and Psychotropic Substances.During a visit to Belgrade, he said the majority of drugs smuggled into Europe come from Afghanistan, with Kosovo acting as the distribution center.He insisted that Russia and Serbia cannot cope alone and need full regional cooperation. "This is a global phenomenon and no country alone can solve this problem. This requires a common will and active cooperation," the minister said.Ivanov said that Serbia is a part of "the Balkan route", which is used for drug trafficking and brings more than 60 per cent of the heroin produced in Afghanistan into Europe.Ivanov also believes that Russia should create a Balkan anti-narcotics quintet made up of Russia, Serbia, Albania, Montenegro, and Macedonia.More than 90 per cent of the world’s heroin originates in Afghanistan.