700 Pakistanis die daily due to drug-related issues and seven million people are addicted to drugs.
Drug-related deaths are thus greater than those caused by terrorism— the latter killing 39 each day compared to the 700 deaths from drug addiction.
In 2011, Pakistan had been declared “poppy-free” but in recent years poppy cultivation – which is used for prodcuing opiates – has increased dramatically in neighbouring Afghanistan.
Four hospitals only are available to rehabilitate addicts, while another is being established. Major problems plaguing the response to the death toll and drug epidemic concerned lack equipment and accommodation.
Pakistan is making efforts to tackle the problem:
- 106 drug gangs, including 13 international gangs, have so far been busted in 2015.
- Around 344 people have been prosecuted in 2015, on track of increasing the total number of prosecutions per year.
To curb drug trafficking remains a major challenge for the Pakistani government.