U.K. IMPLICATED IN AFGHANISTAN DRUG TRADE *****
Thu Dec 15, 2011 2:28AM GMT
A senior Afghan official has accused Britain of involvement in illicit narcotics trade in Afghanistan, Press TV reports.
“There are documents and evidence that show that British forces in [Afghanistan’s] Helmand Province not only did nothing to prevent the illicit drug trade, but in some cases also took part in it,” Yousef-Ali Vaezi, an advisor to Afghan President Hamid Karzai, told Press TV on Thursday.
“They cooperated in the cultivation, production, and trafficking of drugs,” he added.
He also said that the restrictive conditions brought in the declaration of the national gathering of Afghan tribal leaders — the Loya Jirga — which was recently held to discuss long-term security agreement with the US, were still valid.
Based on the conditions, Vaezi said, the US-led foreign forces in Afghanistan would not be granted immunity from prosecution.
On November 19, the assembly of more than 2,000 Afghan tribal elders and dignitaries issued the declaration, endorsing President Hamid Karzai’s decision to negotiate the long-term deal.
The four-day meeting centered on setting up long-term American bases in Afghanistan after the withdrawal of the US-led troops from the country, which is expected to take place in 2014.
Many parts of Afghanistan remain insecure ten years following the US-led invasion of the Asian country and despite the presence there of nearly 150,000 US-led foreign forces.
According to some reports, the production of narcotics in Afghanistan have increased nearly 40 times since the US-led forces invaded the country in 2001.