Drug use among teens goes up

By Hao Di Source:Global Times Published: 2011-11-15 0:24:27

China has seen a rising number of teenage drug abuse cases, with more rural teenagers, who have been left in the countryside by their migrant parents, becoming addicted, said an official with the drug control authority Monday.

Wang Gang, director of the general office of the China National Narcotic Control Commission, told the China Youth Daily that as of November 7, public security authorities have identified 1.78 million young people under the age of 35 as drug abusers, more than twice what it was at the end of 2009.

Accounting for an overwhelming 87 percent of total drug users in the country are drug addicts under 35 years of age, Wang claimed.

The growing number of rural teenagers left at home while their parents seek jobs in cities, and have been reportedly taking drugs, is noticeable, the China Youth Daily quoted Wang as saying.

"A lot of such young people in rural areas turn to drugs due to the lack of parental guidance and underestimate the harmful consequences drug use poses," said Wang, explaining they often seek fun on the Internet, which has been blamed by public security authorities as a platform for buying or selling such substances.

According to Wang, synthetic drugs such as methamphetamine and ecstasy, have gained popularity among young drug addicts.

Figures from the National Narcotic Control Commission show of the 120,000 newly reported synthetic drug users last year, half were under 25.

Young addicts often believe synthetic drugs to have lower risks compared to other drugs, the Xinhua News Agency reported.

However, the use of synthetic drugs can be highly addictive and cause serious damage to the human body, said Xinhua.

Juvenile delinquency has been on the rise in the country, most of which has been drug related.

Surveys from public security departments in Guangdong Province pointed out that more than 80 percent of juvenile delinquency cases in the province could be attributed to drug use, according to the Southern Daily.

China has vowed to crack down on illegal drug use by conducting a series of national anti-drug campaigns.

In this year's campaign against Internet drug sales, public security departments in Hainan Province uncovered an illegal narcotics ring that sold substances through social networking and video websites, the first of its kind in the country, the Beijing-based Legal Daily reported.

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