Drug Control Narcotics Threat From Colombia Continues to Grow.
GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE WASHINGTON DC NATIONAL SECURITY AND INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS DIV
Pagination or Media Count:
Despite the efforts of U.S. and Colombian authorizes, the illegal narcotics threat from Colombia has grown since we reported last year. Today, Colombia remains the primary source country for cocaine products for the U.S. market. For the third year in a row, coca cultivation has increased so that Colombia is now the worlds leading cultivator of coca. More potent coca leaf is being grown within Colombia, which is likely to lead to an estimated 50-percent increase in cocaine production in the next 2 years. Colombia is now the major supplier of heroin to the eastern part of the Untied States. In the past year, the Colombian government has lost a number of battles to insurgent groups who, along with paramilitary groups, have increased their involvement in illicit narcotics activities and gained greater control over large portions of Colombia where drug-trafficking activities occur. The government of Colombia has undertaken a number of initiatives to address the narcotics threat. These include the initiation of peace talks with the insurgents the development of a national drug control strategy the establishment of a joint military-police task force to combat drug traffickers the development of a new counternarcotics unit within the Colombian army that will be fully screened for human rights abuses and the implementation of legislative reforms on extradition, money laundering, and asset forfeiture. In 1998, these efforts led to the seizure of record amounts of cocaine and arrests of drug traffickers. However, illegal drugs from Colombia remain readily available in the United States.
- Sociology and Law