Russia to discuss Afghan strategy with EU in April


Brussels/Moscow. March 25 (Interfax) - The European Union will unveil its Afghanistan action strategy in May, said Viktor Ivanov, Director of the Russian Federal Drug Control Service (FSKN).

"In May, the EU will present the concept of its Afghan strategy after its discussion in April, to which Russia has been invited. It will be announced by MEP Pino Arlacchi," Ivanov said during a video conference between Moscow and Brussels on Thursday.

 "It was him [Arlacchi] who as Deputy Secretary General of the United Nations made a great contribution to the cause of destroying opium poppy in Afghanistan from 1998 through until 2001 when poppy crops were reduced 12-fold," Ivanov said.

It was Arlacchi who proposed the signing of the fatwa by Afghan leader Mullah Omar, fully banning the cultivation of opium poppy, as a result of which 90% of poppy have been destroyed in the country, the official said.

"In 1998 he secured the UN political decision on the need to eradicate or radically reduce opium poppy crops," the FSKN director added.


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