-Russia's top drugs adviser has called on the United States to use its troop surge into Afghanistan to help stem the flow of drugs entering its borders, as heroin addiction reaches epidemic levels.
Last week President Barack Obama announced plans to send an extra 30,000 U.S. troops to the region in an effort to stabilize the Afghan government by defeating the Taliban, who are believed to be heavily involved in the country's burgeoning drugs trade.
However the strategy of destroying the poppy fields of southern Afghanistan, which yield the heroin flooding out of the country, is now viewed as counterproductive by the U.S.-led coalition because it drives farmers into the hands of the Taliban.
Last year the United Nations Office for Drugs and Crime (UNODC) estimated that Afghan poppy farmers earned around $730 million, making it a hugely lucrative cash crop.
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