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She agreed to discuss her addiction with the Associated Press only on condition of anonymity because of the stigma attached to addiction in Iraq.She is part of a phenomenon in Iraq's southern Basra province, where illegal drug use and sales have reached previously unseen levels, mainly among youths, over the last three years.The most popular narcotic in Iraq, Abdul-Razzaq said, is crystal methamphetamine, the white crystalline drug produced in neighboring countries and ingested by inhaling, smoking or injecting.However, with the removal of the death sentence after the 2003 U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam, Basra saw an increase in the smuggling and sales of narcotics, including new ones like hashish and methamphetamine.The Basra anti-narcotics officer said that since late 2014, the drug trade has thrived because of a security vacuum left when many forces were moved from the borders to join the fight against the Islamic State group, which swept through nearly a third of Iraq that year. Along with methamphetamine, authorities in the province began to seize hashish and small amounts of opium and pills, he said.
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