Philippines, US anti-drug cooperation successful ­– envoy
Bebot Sison Jr., Cecille Suerte Felipe (The Philippine Star) - September 23, 2015 - 10:00am

MANILA, Philippines - A United States envoy said the cooperation of the Philippines and the US against illegal drugs is a success as evidenced by a series of accomplishments.

In a press conference yesterday, State Assistant Secretary William Brownfield, head of the US Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL), cited instances indicating that cooperation between the US and the Philippines has been fruitful.

Brownfield said the US is suffering from a major heroin crisis, as the sale and consumption of the drug there since 2007 have more than doubled.

Based on assessment, less than four percent of the heroin entering the US is supplied by Asia, despite nearly 90 percent of the drug’s supply in the world coming from Asia, specifically Afghanistan and Myanmar.

“This is one example of success. Logic would suggest that if we have not been successful in our drug cooperation with the Philippines, far closer to 90 percent of the heroin consumed in the US, reflecting the world supply, would come in some way from Asia,” Brownfield said.

He said it was somewhat illogical that the region producing 90 percent of world heroin supply would have only four percent share in the US market.

He also cited the arrest in the Philippines of a drug trafficker who was trafficking Asian products in the US, saying it is another example of the success of the US-Philippines cooperation.

“Every time you hear of the national maritime group stopping and seizing a vessel that is moving product, whether heroin or any other illicit drugs, through Philippine national waters, that is another example of success,” Brownfield said.

“We do cooperate, we do training, we do capacity building between the US law enforcement agency, particularly the Drug Enforcement Agency, the Philippine National Police and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency. This is an example of success.

“If you ask me if we have solved the drug problem in the Philippines and the US? No, of course not. I believe that will take a generation. As I say, it has taken our society 40 years or 50 years to get into this mess and it will take us a generation to get out of this,” he added.

A UNITED STATES ACIRC AFGHANISTAN AND MYANMAR AS I BROWNFIELD BUREAU OF INTERNATIONAL NARCOTICS AND LAW ENFORCEMENT AFFAIRS DEPARTMENT OF STATE DRUG DRUG ENFORCEMENT AGENCY PHILIPPINES STATE ASSISTANT SECRETARY WILLIAM BROWNFIELD
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