Afghan forces destroy 4 heroin labs in restive province

Source: Xinhua| 2019-02-10 14:09:32|Editor: Chengcheng
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KABUL, Feb. 10 (Xinhua) -- Afghan security forces have destroyed four heroin manufacturing labs following a joint operation in eastern province of Nangarhar, in a latest effort to fight illegal drugs, Ministry of Interior Affairs reported on Sunday.

"The Counter-Narcotics Police of Afghanistan (CNPA) backed by Afghan Air Force conducted a special operation in Nakor Khil village, Khogyani district of Nangarhar Friday night," the ministry said in a statement.

The joint forces also arrested two suspected drug-traffickers besides destroying a drug cache containing more than 6,000 tons of narcotics, the statement added.

The restive province has been the scene of heavy clashes between security forces, Taliban militants and Islamic State (IS) fighters over the past years.

The raid was a heavy blow for Taliban insurgents and anti-government militants as they have been using profits from the illegal drugs to fund insurgency, the statement said.

Much of the world's opium poppy is cultivated in the militancy-hit country.

In 2018, some 6,400 tons of poppy opium has been produced in Afghan provinces, compared with 9,000 tons in 2017, according to Afghan officials.

The decrease in opium production can be attributed to the reduction in poppy cultivation, poppy fields destruction by security forces and a severe drought which hit northern and western parts of the country, officials said.