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President Karzai Welcomes the Result of the Survey on Poppy Cultivation; Calls for Assistance towards Alternative Livelihoods
Released by the Office of the Spokesman to the President

03/27/2005

Presidential Palace, Kabul - H.E. Hamid Karzai, President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, welcomes the result of the Rapid Assessment Survey of poppy cultivation and eradication carried out jointly by United Nations Office for Drugs & Crime and the Ministry of Counter Narcotics.

The survey, carried out in 225 villages and 198 districts of 34 provinces reveals a falling trend in opium poppy cultivation in the majority of the 34 provinces, mainly because farmers refrained from planting. The main reasons reported by villagers for refraining from cultivating poppy were: respect for the government’s ban on opium poppy cultivation as well as fear of eradication by the Government.

In his reaction to the report the President said: “I’m extremely pleased to note that the people of Afghanistan have responded positively to the call for Jihad against the evil of narcotics. This indicates that the Afghan people are taking steps towards ridding their country from this menace. I hope that the international community will also fulfil its responsibility by providing assistance towards Alternative Livelihoods so that the scourge of narcotics will be defeated forever, and Afghanistan will become a drug free country.”

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