Canada’s military won’t investigate British media reports that Canadian soldiers are alleged to have smuggled heroin out of Afghanistan, sources told CBC News.
The military was reacting to reports Sunday in the Sunday Times and the BBC that Canadian and British troops have been sending large quantities of heroin out of Afghanistan on military aircraft taking troops back to Britain.
The heroin was then allegedly sold to drug traffickers for sale on the streets.
However, the military sources said Monday that following a thorough check with officials on the ground at Kandahar Air Field and through the chain of command, there are no allegations of Canadian heroin smuggling and will be no investigation of any smuggling.
The military sources called the reports a case of media speculation.
The Canadian military is due to issue an official statement shortly.
On Sunday, Britain’s Ministry of Defence said it was aware of the smuggling allegations raised in the media reports.
“Although they are unsubstantiated, we take any such reports very seriously and we have already tightened our existing procedures both in Afghanistan and in the U.K., including through increasing the use of trained sniffer dogs.
The Ministry of Defence said it regrets “any inconvenience this causes to our service personnel. Any of our people found to be engaged in trafficking of illegal narcotics will feel the full weight of the law.”
Julius Cavendish, a reporter for the Christian Science Monitor based in Kabul, said there has been no official response to the allegations from the Afghan government of President Hamid Karzai.
“But there is a likelihood that this will be useful stick for the [Afghan] government to beat back the West next time allegations surface of corruption [and]of narcotics trafficking by senior members of the government.”
– Article from CBC News