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U.S. Allies Are Also Major Drug Producers - 2003-02-01


President Bush has named several key allies as countries that are major producers or transit routes of illegal drugs.

The President's annual report to Congress on drugs includes Canada, China and India. It also includes Afghanistan and Pakistan, two important allies in the war on terrorism.

The report says all of those countries are cooperating in the fight against illegal drugs.

However, Guatemala, Haiti and Burma did not meet the White House test of cooperation. The report said those three failed demonstrably to live up to international obligations to combat drugs and to take steps demanded under U.S. law.

Countries not found to be cooperative normally face sanctions such as the loss of U.S. assistance.

This is the first year Guatemala has been cited for non-cooperation. But along with Haiti, it will be spared sanctions on what the White House said are national interest grounds.

Burma will be sanctioned, but the move is symbolic. Washington cut off aid to Burma years ago over its human rights record.

Canada was named as a major source of potent marijuana and pseudoephedrine, one of the components of methamphetamine.

The report also said the Netherlands was a major producer of ecstasy, or MDMA, which the report said was coming into the United States at alarming rates.

The report also identified as major drug-producing or transit nations the Bahamas, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Jamaica, Laos, Mexico, Nigeria, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Thailand, Venezuela and Vietnam.

Information for this report is provided by AP and Reuters.

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