The U.S. statement was a pledge to reduce the demand for illicit drugs through education and expand treatment efforts. REUTERS/Mike Hutchings/File Photo
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Some 129 countries at the United Nations signed on to a U.S.-drafted pledge to fight the global drug problem Monday that U.S. President Donald Trump warned presented a public health and national security threat.Countries signing the nonbinding U.S. statement pledged to develop national action plans to reduce demand for illicit drugs through education, expand treatment efforts, strengthen international cooperation on justice, law enforcement and health, and cut off the supply by stopping production.Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern noted the United States itself was particularly focused on tackling opioids.Since the Global Commission on Drug Policy, which includes 12 former heads of state, began advocating for an end to drug prohibition in 2011, a growing number of countries and U.S. states have created medical or recreational markets for marijuana.By taking control of illegal drug markets, the report argues governments can weaken the powerful criminal gangs that have grown despite decades of efforts to stamp them out.
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