Afghan Opium Output at Record High

Afghan Opium Output at Record High
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August 28, 2007—Armed Afghan policemen sit with confiscated poppy bulbs during the destruction of a farmer's field in the village of Karezaq, near Kandahar in southern Afghanistan on April 11, 2004. (See map of Afghanistan).

Afghanistan now accounts for 93 percent of the global production of opium, up from 70 percent in 2000, a United Nations report released on August 27 says.

"The situation is dramatic and getting worse by the day," said Antonio Maria Costa of the UN Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

Opium is a narcotic that comes from the fluid of the unripened poppy seed pod. Around 80 percent of opium poppies were grown in the provinces along the Pakistani border, the report said.

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—Photograph by David Guttenfelder/AP
 
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