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Bucharest
January 25, 2022
EDITORIAL

The drug trafficking

In Romania, drug consumption takes momentum despite the contrary statements and measures, more or less governmental. So the figure – be it approximate – of all drug consumers is unknown today. It is only estimated that 19,000 so-called “problematic drug consumers” exist in Bucharest. What is known with more certainty is the fact that the age of drug consumers decreased to 10-11 years, that the infection with HIV is on the rise and the medical treatment of this disease costs EUR 10,000 a year for each patient. The National Antidrug Agency makes efforts at least to keep the situation under control, but its results are uncertain. Why? Because under the aspect of ethnobotanic substances drugs are more and more diverse, so they are harder to control. 73 new narcotics appeared on the European market of late and this uninterrupted masked diversification practically cancels the defence strategies devised so far.

This explains the offensive of drug consumption that escapes control. Prohibiting the sale of drugs no longer has the wanted effect as ethnic drugs take different shapes each day and the internet advertises the “state of euphoria” provoked by ethnic drugs, avoiding any other information about the specific illnesses. In such situations, it is easy to understand that the transit of ethnic drugs is amplified up to a phase when more and more trafficking networks appear, which promote atrocious violence. In a recent incident, two youths were found dead, locked in a car that was set ablaze and then ditched in a pond. According to hints unveiled by police, they were murdered in a drug-related incident. In other cases, young drug addicts are stabbed precisely when they bargain for the daily dose. Traffickers sometimes escape criminal prosecution, using a so-called defence measure. They take drugs before any action and this precautionary measure often favours them. Why? Because anyone caught under the influence of drugs is not arrested and only those sober when caught are taken in police custody.
Many such cases, sometimes favoured by the “gaps” and improvisations existing in antidrug laws demonstrate today everywhere in the world that the main efficient measure is preventing the consumption of drugs, rather than fighting it. Detaining traffickers – as detaining consumers is out of question – proved to be an increasingly dramatic method of drug consumption. Not only because the invasion of drugs in prisons can rarely be controlled, but also because here the consumption of drugs provokes frequent scenes of atrocious violence. The correct, peaceful behaviour of inmates is no longer prerequisite to paroling, because it is produced anyway more frequently. The overcrowding of prisons makes the Romanian state spend more than it allocates for minors in foster homes and patients in hospitals… Some EU officials, in their frequent questioning of Romania over the observance of fundamental human rights, are more concerned with the reality of prisons than the situation of foster homes for children or seniors, where food is inferior to that served to inmates.
This is why preventing drug consumption must often take precedence over combating it. And the actions of the National Antidrug Agency must be correlated with those conducted by the ministries of Education, Health, Interior and even National Defence, because the illegal drug trafficking often prefers Romania, rather than avoid it. But such inter-ministerial coordination still does not exist. It cannot be found in the measures aimed at the protection of minors, although they come under the slogan that “the child’s interest is above everything else!” Parents are the first called upon to collaborate in educating children, with advice and personal positive examples that exclude physical assaults. Parental violence is justly prohibited, but unfortunately this does not also encompass the violence on the drug market, which is much more dangerous. The positive measures thus risk turning into their contrary.
Even police sometimes refuses to take measures against petty drug traffickers, on grounds that its attention must be focused on the border region, in order to prevent the drug trafficking. It is known that the perpetual delay in accepting Romania to the Schengen zone was and is explained through the request that our country strengthens its eastern and south-eastern borders, through which large quantities of drugs can be smuggled from the East. But all kind of unpredicted issued appear here. These borders were securitized to the maximum, as acknowledged even by EU bodies. Drugs no longer can enter Romania through these borders, so they come now from the West, as the EU space has become the main supplier of drugs. Together with Germany, the Netherlands is in the top of western countries with internet sites that sell ethnic drugs substances also to Romania. With the defence measures adopted by Romania being so effective that they are praised even by the EU, probably this is the reason for Netherlands’ opposition to the admission of our country to the Schengen zone. Thus, not only in Romania, but in the West too there are rulers that do not forget especially their “hidden agenda.”
This contradictory complex of factors, also international, feed the drug consumption in Romania, which expands to younger ages each year. Although the “dream shops” have been closed in theory, the infection with hepatitis, HIV and AIDS takes impetus, instead of diminishing. They are amplified also because of the practice of drug addicts reusing the syringes for injectable drugs. Initially appeared in prisons, such practices expanded outside these institutions. As a consequence, the National Antidrug Agency, along with several well-intended centers were forced to focus on giving away free syringes, as the most urgent measure against the spreading of these illnesses. But such measures, although well-intended, have effect neither in combatting, nor in preventing the consumption of drugs. It is essential not just to protect drug addicts against infections, but also to bring them back to normal life and socially reinsert them.
It is known that unemployment, chronic poverty, school abandonment and the sinking into antisocial behaviour favour the consumption of drugs. And when it is also associated with alcohol, mortality cannot be cured regardless of the medical treatment that is used. This is why the best way to fight the consumption of drugs is represented by the social measures of fighting poverty, unemployment, school abandonment, family discrimination etc.

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