Against the backdrop of a rapidly changing world, the problem of drug addiction remains acute and relevant. UN figures leave no doubt: more than 27 million people in the world face this problem. Dramatic statistics announce the truth: approximately 450,000 people per year die from drug use, and drug-related crimes are only growing, increasing the number of prisoners.
The drug problem is also receiving important attention in Kyrgyzstan. The figures speak for themselves: about 8,000 people are officially registered as drug users, and this is only the tip of the iceberg. Given the difficult situation, unofficial estimates show much higher figures.
The Kyrgyz Republic has begun active implementation of harm reduction programs and opioid agonist therapy. HIV prevention programs have become a powerful tool to combat the spread of drug addiction. By 2022, more than 16,000 people are already covered by these programs, and support for key populations is becoming part of the government strategy.
But the challenge remains. Unbalanced drug laws and restrictions are slowing progress. Discrimination must be overcome, an enabling environment created, and access to health care for those in need must be ensured.
For more details and solutions, see the full briefing paper: https://eeca.aph.org.ua/wp-content/uploads/2023/02/Kyrgyzstan.pdf.