The New Light of MyanmarMonday, 8 November, 1999

The New Light of

Monday, 8 November, 1999



against narcotic drugsĀ 

The Union of Myanmar has stepped up its fight against narcotic drugs on all fronts ranging from cultivation of substitute crops and introduction of alternative

source of income like livestock breeding to cooperation with the United Nations and

neighboring countries.

In his address at the meeting of the Central Committee for Drug Abuse Control the other day, Chairman of the Central Committee Minister for Home Affairs Col Tin Hlaing recalled that Chairman of the State Peace and Development Council and Prime Minister Senior General Than Shwe visited Thailand at the invitation of Thai Prime Minister Mr Chuan Leekpai in March this year. He said the two Prime Ministers focused their discussions on rooting out narcotic drugs. This was followed by the visit of a high-level Thai delegation and its meeting with Myanmar counterparts. The delegation members then went to the border areas and saw for themselves anti-drug activities there. Members of the Thai delegation were thus informed of the Myanmar government’s and local people’s resolve to eliminate the narcotic drugs problem. Similarly, delegates who attended the Fourth International Heroin Conference early this year were conducted on a tour of the border areas.

During a meeting between members of the Counter Narcotic Centre (CNC) of American State Department and Myanmar officials last month, the American side admitted that there was a drop of 31 percent in poppy cultivation in Myanmar during 1999 when compared with that of 1998, and that 38 per cent drop in opium production when compared with that of 1998. However, the CNC concluded that the drop in poppy cultivation and production was due to bad weather thereby ignoring earnest efforts of Myanmar government and local people. Whatever may be their remark, the drop can

be assumed as the beginning of the victory resulting from the stepped-up efforts of the government and the people of Myanmar to fight the problem which is threatening the entire human race.

Myanmar has also adopted a Master Plan with the aim of eradicating the drug problem under a 15-year plan in cooperation with the

national race leaders who have returned to the level fold. The declaration of Special Region 4 in Shan State (east) as an Opium Free Zone since 22 April 1997 is a significant achievement made known to the world. Similarly, ethnic leaders and national

races are trying to get other areas in Kokang and Wa areas to follow the example in the period 2000-2005.

All with correct attitude truly desirous of fighting

the danger of narcotic drugs will appreciate our sincere efforts. Spiritual and material support from outside will

be of much help in our fight against this social scourge. Anyway, it is the determination of Myanmar to carry on

will the fight with accelerated momentum.