Vladimir Putin criticizes poor coordination of efforts in combating narcotics in Russia

Russian President Vladimir Putin has formulated the "basic points" of the current struggle against narcotics, according to Valentina Matviyenko talking to journalists after a meeting chaired on Wednesday by the president in the Kremlin. The head of state drew attention to the need for preventive work, the vice-premier noted. Mass media should be more aggressive in popularizing healthy living. The Health Ministry, the president believes, should be more energetic in developing a network of rehabilitation and treatment centres.

Matviyenko also said that Putin "severely criticized" poor coordination of departmental efforts in dealing with narcotics. The Russian leader gave a month to draft proposals on improving coordination and taking additional measures to combat the spread of narcotics and drug addiction. Matviyenko said that these proposals will be considered by the State Council presidium. "By the end of September we will set forth extra measures against the spread of narcotics," she noted.

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