Tags: All | Thai | Students | Tested | for | Drugs

All Thai Students to be Tested for Drugs

Thursday, 10 January 2002 12:00 AM

Interior Minister Purachai Piumsombun said the ministries of Interior, Education and University Affairs would carry out the testing on all school and university students with the help of the Narcotics Control Board.

He said the timing and details of the program would be worked out at the first meeting of the Drug Abuse Prevention Committee on Jan. 25.

The testing plan is the latest in a series of moves by Purachai in what he has called his "social order" campaign, aimed at combating various forms of vice in Thailand.

He has previously made headlines with high-profile busts of nightclubs and go-go bars and strict enforcement of closing hours. He has also been pushing for a 10 p.m. curfew for children.

Purachai said the tests of Thai students were necessary in order to determine the extent of the penetration of the methamphetamine habit among Thai youth.

Drug enforcement officials have said the use of methamphetamine, known locally as "ya bah" or "crazy drug" had become rampant nationwide, even by primary school students.

A get-tough policy against the sale and manufacturing of methamphetamine has resulted in thousands of arrests during the past year.

But Purachai said students who tested positive for drugs would not be arrested.

Agents from the Narcotics Control Board have estimated that as many as 700 million methamphetamine pills are smuggled into the country each year from jungle laboratories along the Thai-Myanmar border.

Thai army officers have accused the ruling junta in Myanmar of abetting the methamphetamine trade, which has become even bigger than the opium and heroin trade that thrives in the same region.

Copyright 2002 by United Press International. All rights reserved.

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Interior Minister Purachai Piumsombun said the ministries of Interior, Education and University Affairs would carry out the testing on all school and university students with the help of the Narcotics Control Board. He said the timing and details of the program would be...
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2002-00-10
Thursday, 10 January 2002 12:00 AM
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