2012-08-14

U.S. Sent $5.2 Billion to Andean Countries in Last Five Years for Anti-drug War

AFP

The United States granted about $5.2 billion to Andean countries for the fight against drugs between 2006 and 2011, of which Colombia received 76% and Venezuela less than 1%, according to the Government Accountability Office (GAO) on Aug. 9.

The report evaluated the positive impact of anti-drug aid to the region, pointing out that various U.S. departments and agencies “reported having reached or exceeded their annual goals regarding key measurements of anti-drug activity in the Andean countries since 2007”.

Between 2006 and 2011, U.S. provided $3.92 billion to Colombia, 659 million to Peru (13%), 366 million to Bolivia (7%), 233 million to Ecuador (5%) and 7 million to Venezuela (less than 1%), summarized the GAO.

During that five-year period, the anti-drug aid from the United States to the region decreased 51%, from 1.2 billion in 2006 to 588 million in 2011. Cooperation with Colombia has been “the keystone” of bilateral relations, assured the GAO.

Working together has been “successful” and the Colombian authorities “are progressively assuming more responsibility” in the anti-drug program, he emphasized.

Through Plan Colombia, the United States allotted more than $8 billion since 2000, according to the U.S. Department of State.

A recent report from the Office of National Drug Control Policy at the White House showed that last year was the first time since 1995 that Colombia lost first place in worldwide capacity of pure cocaine production, with 195 metric tons, below Peru’s 325 metric tons, and Bolivia’s 265 metric tons.

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