By George Psyllides
Drugs caused 154 deaths in Cyprus between 2000 and 2014, Justice Minister Ionas Nicolaou said on Thursday, in a speech to mark the international day against drug abuse and illegal trafficking.
“The most dangerous position in this macabre path is unfortunately held by youths, the most valuable part of our society,” Nicolaou said.
The minister added that 154 people died from drugs between 2000 and 2014, “a fact that causes grief and concern” but also created the obligation for everyone to take part in tackling this serious social phenomenon.
Nicolaou said the day was one more chance to think about the problems faced by fellow citizens and join forces to tackle it.
“To reflect on the causes that lead to the evil and why it continues to rise and destroy the most valuable part of our society, our youths,” Nicolaou said. “We owe it to our children and the future of our society.”
The minister said the government’s policy in fighting the problem was comprehensive, featuring prevention and treatment programnes, and social reintegration of users. Special emphasis was put on stamping out illegal trafficking rings and bringing those involved to justice.