World Day Against Illicit Drugs: what about Thailand? (SCOOP)


Today is the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking. The day was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1987 to encourage the whole world to place more importance on controlling the illicit drugs problem. Drugs in Thailand are still a major concern, even though large-scale illegal shipments are often seized by authorities. INTERVIEW VOICE OVER According to the Office of the Narcotics Control Board, Thailand is the frequent destination of shipments from neighboring countries. Illicit drugs are mostly seized at border crossings, especially in the the North where smuggling accounts for around 61% of all cases, with the North east at 25.5% and 13 % in the Central part of Thailand Most cases occur in Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai, two provinces located close to manufacturing bases in Myanmar, including the Sangkhlaburi district of Kanchanaburi where drug smuggling cases are prevalent. Meanwhile drug precursors and related chemicals used in drugs are also sent to Thailand before being forwarded to production sites in other countries Ethnic minorities and individual women play a role in drug smuggling, often working as agents who negotiate with ringleaders of the trade in neighboring countries While recently, the involvement of some state officials has also been uncovered INTERVIEW Amphetamines are the most popular drug used by addicts receiving treatment; according to the statistics, Amphetamines account for 76.2%, Marijuana 6.2%, Heroin 4.4% and 4.1 % for Methamphetamines, of the drugs in widespread use. While the strict control of drugs may be the ultimate solution, the role of social institutions here is equally important, especially family institutions to address the causes of this debilitating social issue.