After taking power last August, the Taliban promised to crack down on narcotics and explicitly ban the production, processing and sale of illicit drugs.
The decree issued by the authorities of the interim regime to ban the production and sale of illicit drugs was not inadequately enforced, and Afghanistan’s drug trade started flourishing under the Taliban regime.
Following the regime change in August 2021, the economy has crashed and unemployment has skyrocketed, leaving ordinary people with tons of problems to live a normal life. A large majority of people who worked in the previous government lost their jobs and are desperately struggling for survival. Others took either legal or illegal paths to migrate to neighboring countries such as Iran, Pakistan, and Turkey.
On the contrary, the drug trade in Afghanistan did not only remain untouched but boomed to a great extent. The number of drug addicts including men, women and young children living in the worst possible conditions under the bridges is overwhelming.
“My husband was an addict, he convinced me to take drugs. He died some time ago, and I joined a group of addicts for I had no place to live and none of my relatives would accept me,” a female drug addict said, Sky News reported in a video recorded from the scene.
Considering the dire economic and humanitarian crisis in the country, it is beyond the de facto regimes’ capacity to come up with a comprehensive strategy to deal with the drug problem. According to the existing reports, hundreds of families earn their income from drug cultivation and processing.