UN: coca cultivation declines in Colombia, balloons in Bolivia, Peru

Coca cultivation in Colombia dropped by 18% in 2008, following a 27% rise in 2007, the UN Office on Drugs and Crime says in a new report issued June 19. Cocaine production in Colombia, the world’s largest producer of the drug, also fell 28% from a year earlier. These declines were partly offset by increases in coca cultivation in Bolivia, up 6%, and in Peru, up 4.5%, the report said. UNODC executive director Antonio Maria Costa warned: “Peru must guard against a return to the days when terrorists and insurgents profited from drugs and crime.” (NYT, BBC News, June 19)