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Vietiane, Apr 22 (Prensa Latina) Laos educational authorities launched an intense battle today to stop drug use in schools in the capital, which this year recorded higher figures than in 2012. Hongkeo Thammavong, from the municipal department in charge of a special program to deal with the phenomenon, recognized the impossibility of certifying 143 primary and secondary schools, both private and state as narcotics-free.
The goal is to reach 2015 with students freed of any such addiction, according to a plan drawn up in collaboration with other relevant sectors and the support of a Swedish organization experienced in addressing the phenomenon among young people.
Around 15 schools received favorable certificates favorable for a total of 40, and another 50 are hoped to be certified drug-free within the current academic year.
The program manager reported that urine samples taken in 16 schools revealed the presence of drugs at a higher rate than in the previous period, which will lead to a withdrawal of the favorable evaluations.
A recent report from the National Commission for Drug Control and Supervision noted with alarm the increasing illegal trade in the country and its risks for the younger generation.
In 2012 the police arrested 2,000 people throughout the country who were selling drugs, along with more than 50 foreigners.
Due to strengthened laws and a willingness to tackle the problem, authorities were able to seize 55 kilograms of heroin, 1,200 tablets of methamphetamine, 199 of opium, and 2,266 of marijuana.