Drug addiction numbers soar in Iran

Parviz Afshar, the spokesman of Iran’s Drug Control Organization

The number of Iranian drug addicts has doubled in the past six years under Hassan Rouhani’s administration, with a regime official revealing that drugs have become easier to access and many addicts organizing their purchases online.

In an interview on Iranian state TV’s IRNA news channel, Parviz Afshar, the spokesman of Iran’s Drug Control Organization, told the newscaster, “Getting access to drugs in our country isn’t very difficult, but they’re not going to be obtained within three minutes. In this regard, we’ve got varying statistics in different provinces of the country’ for example, the time taken to obtain access to drugs can range from thirty minutes to forty-five minutes or an hour But the access to drugs isn’t related to physical access, which means that it’s become common through [drug dealers] using the internet to organize a meeting with [drug abusers], as well as carrying out financial transactions online, and these activities are well-monitored by the anti-drug online police.”

The number of Iranian drug addicts has soared in recent years, with over 2.8 million citizens or double the previous number now registered as drug addicts, according to regime media.

Speaking about this sharp rise in drug abuse cases, Afshar said, “there are 2.8 million people who regularly abuse drugs,” adding that according to the latest statistics from experts at the Ministry of Health and the Drug Control Organization, the number had risen from 1.3 million six years ago. A total of 66.8 percent of the users are using heroin or some other opiate, while 11.9 percent use marijuana, and a further 8.1 percent abuse methamphetamines.