The meeting discussed ways to improve the state policy to fight illicit traffic in and abuse of drugs in the country.
Mr Putin expressed concern over the growth of drug addiction in Russia citing the following alarming statistics: the Russian drug market constitutes over $1 billion; total number of drug addicts has increased nine-fold in the past 10 years with a 17-time increase in drug abuse among teenagers; every fifth draftee has tried drugs; the total number of drug addicts on file in Russia is 269,000.
The President noted that heroin of Afghan origin accounted for 28% in the total drug consumption in Russia, but at the same time domestic drug production, including synthetic drugs, was growing.
Mr Putin stated that the drug business was a financial resource for terrorist groups and armed gangs and noted that Russia had become a moneymaking transit corridor for drug trafficking. In that connection the President underlined the need to shut off all drug distribution channels and reinforce the power agencies both in terms of finance and staff, eliminate any loopholes in the financial, legal and social spheres, and provide for punishment for drug distribution.
The Security Council meeting resolved to fortify Russia’s southern borders and named production of a drug detecting device as one of the measures aimed at reducing the incoming drug volume. The measure was included in the governmental 2002–2004 programme also discussed at the meeting.
The Interior Minister Boris Gryzlov and Health Minister Yuri Shevchenko were among the keynote speakers.