Afghanistan dispatches: hashish production to be legalized?
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Afghanistan dispatches: hashish production to be legalized?

Law students and lawyers in Afghanistan are filing reports with JURIST on the situation there after the Taliban takeover. Here, a Staff Correspondent for JURIST in Kabul offers his observations on the potential legalization of hashish production in the country. For privacy and security reasons, we are withholding our Correspondent’s name. The text has been only lightly edited to respect the author’s voice.

Some local media are reporting that the Taliban are planning to legalize the production of hashish in Afghanistan. No local legislation allows production of any kind of drugs in the country at least until now.

During the former government in Afghanistan, drug cultivation, processing, and distribution brought a lot of money to the Taliban. It was/is one of their biggest incomes. The Taliban controlled almost all of the places in which drug was cultivated, processed, and its distribution was initiated.

There has been no discussion by the Taliban – since their takeover – regarding how they will be combatting the drug market in the country, and now it seems that they are interested in legalizing it.

Recently an Australian company has come to an agreement with the Taliban to establish a hashish processing factory in Afghanistan. The Taliban confirms the discussion with the Australian company and adds that the contract with that company is processed and almost finalized. According to the Taliban the company will start operations in Afghanistan in a few days.

The Taliban also added that the hashish process will be aimed to make medicine from it but they have provided no further information on what medicine will be produced? Where that medicine will be used? And what the terms and conditions of the contract with the Australian company?

If the Australian company starts up, the Taliban will have to change the relevant legislation and or make some new legislation so that the concerned company can legally operate in the country. It has to be noted that this will also raise a lot of concerns in the country as Afghanistan has millions addicted to different kinds of drugs and the Taliban’s policy to regulate, combat, and prevent drug addiction is unclear.