Peru: Security Forces Eradicate More than 6,000 Hectares of Coca Crops in 2020
By Eduardo Szklarz/Diálogo February 24, 2021
During 2020, the Special Project for Control and Reduction of Illegal Crops in Alto Huallaga (CORAH, in Spanish) eradicated 6,272.8 hectares of illegal coca crops, with support from the Peruvian National Police (PNP).
Carlos León Romero, vice minister of Internal Order at the Peruvian Ministry of the Interior, presided over the project’s closing ceremony at the CORAH operations base in Pucallpa, Ucayali department, on December 16, 2020, where he presented the information.
“The operations covered seven coca crops in five operational areas, with the aim of preventing illicit crops from being used in the production of cocaine destined for narcotrafficking, especially in the Apurímac, Ene, and Mantaro Rivers Valley,” Romero said.
The vice minister acknowledged the presence of the U.S. government in the area, through the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs. He also highlighted that the two countries’ combined work strengthens the fight against narcotrafficking.
Authorities eradicated the more than 6,000 hectares of illegal crops in just over three months, divided into two periods: from February 17 to March 15 and from October 2 to December 12, as the pandemic caused an interruption in the activities.
“During the operations, CORAH and PNP personnel destroyed six cocaine labs,” the Peruvian government indicated in a press release.
In addition, Peruvian security forces incinerated 19 tons of drugs that were seized from August to October 2020.
Authorities destroyed more than 9 tons of cocaine base paste, 4.2 tons of cocaine hydrochloride, and 5.7 tons of marijuana, in addition to 9 kilograms of opium latex and 53 kg of amphetamine derivatives, such as ecstasy and other synthetic drugs, the Peruvian government reported.
Authorities incinerated the drugs at the PNP’s Special Operations Directorate base, in Lima’s Ate district, on November 30.
“With this initiative […] we reaffirm the commitment of the State and its authorities to combat this scourge, which causes so much damage to the population, even in times of a pandemic,” Peruvian Army General Óscar Gonzales, director general of the Ministry of the Interior’s Department Against Organized Crime, said during the ceremony.