News / Asia

Crystal Meth Use Soars in Indonesia

A quantity of crystal methamphetamine totaling 6.4 grams is displayed next to a ruler (File photo).A quantity of crystal methamphetamine totaling 6.4 grams is displayed next to a ruler (File photo).
x
A quantity of crystal methamphetamine totaling 6.4 grams is displayed next to a ruler (File photo).
A quantity of crystal methamphetamine totaling 6.4 grams is displayed next to a ruler (File photo).
Kate Lamb
The use of the drug crystal methamphetamine has been steadily on the rise in Southeast Asia, in recent years. This week, a joint report by the National Narcotics Agency and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime shows that crystal meth is the now the greatest illicit threat facing Indonesia.

Known in Indonesia as “shabu shabu,” crystal methamphetamine usage has expanded exponentially.

In 2011, Indonesians consumed an estimated 12.5 metric tons of the potent and highly addictive narcotic. According to the U.N. report, crystal meth seizures rose 79 percent the same year.

Ade Auliaerwin, a project officer at the U.N. crime and drug office in Jakarta says crystal meth use is on the rise for two simple reasons - it is cheap and simple to manufacture.

“To produce methamphetamine, mostly known in Indonesia as shabu, it is very easy. You can get the information on the Internet and it does not require specific equipment to produce so that is why there is a lot of home-based production,” said Auliaerwin.

Of the total drug users in the country in 2011, one in three, or about 1.2 million, used crystal meth.

Indonesia was traditionally a destination country for trafficked drugs such as crystal meth, heroin and ecstasy. But now it is hub for crystal meth labs and a major supplier of ecstasy to other Southeast Asian nations.

Once confined to urban centers, the report also found that shabu shabu is used extensively across the archipelago and most frequently in the more remote islands of Kalimantan and Sumatra.

The report warns that - with high profits and an expanding meth market - Indonesia will continue to attract the attention of international drug syndicates.

Auliaerwin says it is a reality with which the Indonesia government may not be ready to deal.

Users of amphetamine-type substances, or ATS, he says, are not properly targeted by the government.

“In terms of providing of drug dependent treatment I think Indonesia is still, the capacity of Indonesian government is on providing treatment for heroin users not for ATS users," explained Auliaerwin. "The modality of the treatment, capacity of the staff, mostly they are prepared to provide treatment for heroin drug people, not ATS.”

Cannabis remains the most widely used drug in Indonesia, but meth is catching up.

The estimated value of crystal meth on the Indonesian market is $1 billion per year

You May Like

How to Safeguard Your Mobile Privacy

As the digital world becomes more mobile, so too do concerns about eroding privacy and increased hacking More

'Desert Dancer' Chronicles Iranian Underground Dance Troupe

Film by Richard Raymond is based on true story of Afshin Ghaffarian and his friends More

Obesity Poses Complex Problem

Professor warns of obesity’s worldwide health impact More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam Wari
X
Katherine Gypson
May 25, 2015 1:32 AM
For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.
Video

Video Scientists Testing Space Propulsion by Light

Can the sun - the heart of our solar system - power a spacecraft to the edge of our solar system? The answer may come from a just-launched small satellite designed to test the efficiency of solar sail propulsion. Once deployed, its large sail will catch the so-called solar wind and slowly reach what scientists hope to be substantial speed. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video FIFA Trains Somali Referees

As stability returns to the once lawless nation of Somalia, the world football governing body, FIFA, is helping to rebuild the country’s sport sector by training referees as well as its young footballers. Abdulaziz Billow has more from Mogadishu.
Video

Video With US Child Obesity Rates on the Rise, Program Promotes Health Eating

In its fifth year, FoodCorps puts more than 180 young Americans into 500 schools across the United States, where they focus on teaching students about nutrition, engaging them with hands-on activities, and improving their access to healthy foods whether in the cafeteria or the greater community. Aru Pande has more.
Video

Video Virginia Neighborhood Draws People to Nostalgic Main Street

In the U.S., people used to grow up in small towns with a main street lined by family-owned shops and restaurants. Today, however, many main streets are worn down and empty because shoppers have been lured away by shopping malls. But in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia, main street is thriving. VOA’s Deborah Block reports it has a nostalgic feel with its small restaurants and unique stores.

VOA Blogs