MOSCOW, December 10 (RIA Novosti) – More than 300 Afghan drug enforcement officers have been trained in Russia over the past five years, Federal Drug Control Service head Viktor Ivanov said on Monday.
Afghan personnel receive the training in Russia as part of the NATO-Russia Council’s anti-drug project.
Ivanov praised the contribution made by the drug police in Northern Afghanistan in the efforts to shut down drug trafficking operations along the “northern route” from Afghanistan to Europe via Central Asia and Russia.
The Federal Drug Control Service estimates the annual value of drug trafficking along this route at $20 billion.
Afghanistan is the world’s leading producer of opium, the raw ingredient of heroin, and is “one of the most important countries worldwide in terms of cannabis resin production,” according to the UN’s 2012 World Drug Report.