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Fewer drugs deaths but more crystal meth

The Local · 26 Mar 2012, 16:46

Published: 26 Mar 2012 16:46 GMT+02:00

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While Jörg Zierke. president of Germany’s federal police (BKA), highlighted the dangers of crystal meth, he also called for tougher measures to be taken against cannabis and hashish users.

Indoor cultivation of cannabis had led to very strong strains, he argued. “Thus the talk of ‘soft’ drugs is wrong,” he said on Monday.

What data there is also point to an increase in people trying “hard” drugs, the government’s drug commissioner Mechthild Dyckmans added.

The number of drug-related deaths was down to 986 in 2011, a level not seen since 1988. She said the reduction was due to successful methadone programmes to replace heroin, as well as needle exchange schemes and other medical and social aid programmes for addicts.

Most of those who died were older than 30, while 85 percent were men. Dyckmans said the reduction in drug victims among people younger than 20 was particularly significant, with 79 percent fewer dying in 2011 than a decade ago.

But Zierke warned against complacency, since his officers had registered contact with more than 21,000 people trying “hard” drugs for the first time in 2011, an increase of 14 percent.

The police dealt with 2,742 heroin addicts in 2011, a drop of just over 14 percent, while the number of cocaine users was up by just over four percent to 3,343.

Story continues below…

There was a sharp increase in crystal meth users, with the number of reported cases rising by all of 164 percent to 1,693, Zierke reported.

DAPD/The Local/hc

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

18:20 March 26, 2012 by johnny108
Germany's president of federal police has a dangerously old-fashioned attitude about drugs. Every Euro spent on trying to get rid of a plant- will allow meth to flourish.
21:42 March 26, 2012 by derExDeutsche
Good thing they busted that Marijuana grow house, or else, nobody might have even tried the meth. Maybe the police would like some Paint Huffing next.
21:46 March 26, 2012 by Frenemy
haha, the drug commissioner's name is an anagram for "Meth Child"!
22:34 March 26, 2012 by Ruhetag
"Meth Child" Dyckmans should legalize weed and tax it. Take the tax money and spend in on anti-Meth programs.
02:20 March 27, 2012 by Californian
The article attempts to lump Cannabis and Hash smokers together with Heroin addicts and Meth users. In reality this makes no sense.

Whether weed is "very strong" or not, it is still a non-toxic and non-lethal substance with widely reported beneficial properties.

Cannabis should be legal to those 21 and older.

The tax revenue earned will go a long ways to offset the banning of Tobacco, a proven killer.

An added plus? would be ~120,000 fewer Tobacco related deaths each year in Germany and the reduced burden on healthcare services.
10:25 March 27, 2012 by murka
Does Dyckmans thinks we have no access to this graph?


Did he think he had blocked it by such a sign?


Among drugs only LSD is "safer" than Marijuana. Nicotine and alcohol are much more lethal and addictive.
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