G-8 Applauds US Shift In Afghanistan Drug Policy

By: AP
By: AP

TRIESTE, Italy (AP) _ The United States has announced a new drug
policy for opium-rich Afghanistan, saying it was phasing out
funding for eradication efforts while exponentially increasing its
assistance for alternate crop and drug interdiction efforts.

The U.S. envoy for Afghanistan, Richard Holbrooke, told The Associated Press on Saturday that eradication programs are not
working and are only driving farmers into Taliban hands.

Foreign ministers from the Group of Eight industrialized nations has applauded the shift, which will increase U.S. funding to agriculture into the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Foreign Minister Franco Frattini of Italy, which is president of the G-8, says the new U.S. policy is something the G-8 ``strongly appreciated.''

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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