Opium cultivation continues even as Taliban vows crackdown on Afghanistan’s drug trade

The Taliban’s move to eradicate the drug trade in Afghanistan and ban opium production has faced challenges on several fronts. With the country being one of the biggest producers of opium and a lack of alternative livelihood, farmers continue to cultivate opium despite the Taliban’s warning. The illicit opium trade is intertwined with Afghanistan’s economy, which is in turmoil. However, the production of opium threatens to deter foreign aid in Afghanistan, which has been facing a major economic and humanitarian crisis since the takeover by the Taliban.

Soon after coming to power on August 15, Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said the new government won’t allow drug trade in the country. He said, “We are against drugs and the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan is trying to eradicate the production of narcotics, but it is only possible when the whole world helps us in empowering the farmers and providing them with an alternative to earn their livelihood.”

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