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China Works to Guarantee a Drug-free Olympics
    2008-06-26 10:00:29     CRIENGLISH.com

 China will inspect all inbound cargo and parcels during the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games as part of its anti-drug efforts for the event.

The country's drug control authorities held a press conference on Wednesday ahead of the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking on June 26.

Our reporter Dan Dan has more.

Chinese authorities have vowed to block the inflow of drugs to guarantee a drug-free Olympics. Yang Fengrui is director-general of the Narcotics Control Bureau in the Ministry of Public Security.

"We'll strengthen the punishment for drug trafficking and do everything we can to prevent drugs from entering the country, especially in Olympic host cities."

Yang says the government also aims to enhance people's understanding of drug abuse.

"Two years ago, we initiated an anti-drug campaign in all of the cultural and entertainment facilities in Beijing. A drug-free environment has already been realized in almost all of those places. We also encourage the public to take part in sports to stay away from drugs."

An overall national campaign to combat drugs began more than three years ago. Since April 2005, the country has dealt with nearly 900 drug trafficking cases involving over 2,000 kilograms of narcotics and 1,300 suspects.

More significantly, China's first Anti-Drug Law came into effect since the beginning of this month. Experts say this demonstrates the government's determination to crack down on drug-related illegal activities and they consider the anti-drug campaign a long-term task.

While strengthening investigation efforts and law enforcement, the Chinese government is also attaching greater importance to international cooperation in this field.

The Gold Triangle on the borders of Myanmar, Thailand and Laos has been one of the biggest sources of drugs to China.
Yang Fengrui, the senior official with Ministry of Public Security, says that the Chinese and Myanmar governments have been working closely to share information, hunt drug traffickers and cooperate in law enforcement.

"In recent years, the annual planting area of opium poppies in Myanmar has dropped by nearly 90 percent, from the previous 165,000 hectares to the current 18,000 hectares. This is attributed to the efforts of the local government, as well as aid from China and the international community."

Yang Fengrui says that many local farmers in Myanmar who used to grow opium poppies are now producing grain.

Dan Dan, CRI News.

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