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Pattaya Daily News

18 March 2009 :: 23:03:44 pm 38725

Thai Pm Launches Six-Month Anti-Drugs Campaign

BANGKOK, March 18 - Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva vowed on Wednesday that his government would take drastic measures to stamp out illicit drugs with tangible results being seen within six months.
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In an attempt to curb the rise of drug use in the country, the prime minister told a meeting of security agencies concerned, the fight against the illicit trafficking of drugs must be carried out in a decisive manner on a sustainable basis through law enforcement.

A violent crackdown, he said, though creating short-term effects, could cause more far-reaching troubles in the long run.

Decisive action and suppression must continue, but within legal limits, the premier stressed, noting that a crackdown on drug syndicates in prisons during the past two months demonstrated how legal enforcement could be done effectively.

Bangkok and its neighbouring provinces were the priority oareas of the government’s anti-drugs campaign, as well as the insurgency-wracked southern border provinces, the prime minister said.

Progress on implementing the new campaign will be assessed after the first three months. The six-month campaign will run from April 1 through September 30.

In 2003, then prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra ordered police to suppress drug dealers and traffickers.

Under his so-called ‘war on drugs’, a violent police campaign resulted in the losses of many innocent lives. The campaign gained international notoriety and generated significant fear within Thailand as hundreds persons of suspected drug traffickers, especially presumed amphetamime dealers, were shot by police in extrajudicial fashion in all parts of the country.

An independent investigative committee later reported that the extrajudicial crackdown resulted in 2,819 deaths, with only 1,370 were found to be related to the actual drug crackdown.

The committee reported that 878 people were killed even though they had no connection with drugs, and that 571 were murdered for causes still unknown.

Mr. Thaksin, now convicted and making his way between undisclosed location in foreign countries, at the time defended his policy by saying some drug dealers ‘silenced’ their fellow drug dealers. The Thaksin anti-drug policy won much praise among some sectors of society. (TNA)

Reporter : PDN staff   Photo : Internet   Category : Thailand News

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