Russian Security Council Secretary Vladimir Rushailo told Russian journalists during his stay in Minsk that countering illegal drug-trafficking was a priority of the Russian executive bodies' activity. "The significant growth of opiate addiction causes a special concern," according to Rushailo. He said that 209,189 crimes in the sphere of illegal drugs trafficking had been detected over the 10 months of 2001. This exceeds the rate of the last year's analogous period by 3.3%. Around 50% of all crimes related to illegal drugs turnover are referred to as "grave". Rushailo emphasised that the situation with drugs in most CIS countries would hardly improve in the coming years. According to him, it is crucial to undertake "joint measures with law-enforcers of the CIS countries in order to counter illegal drug trafficking." Rushailo mentioned that the CIS Council of Heads of State adopted in June 2000 a joint programme of fighting organised crime and other grave crimes till 2003, which contains special anti-drugs sections. According to him, development of this programme's provisions resulted in signing a multilateral agreement on the CIS countries' cooperation in the fighting against illegal drug trafficking, in November, 2000. Rushailo has pointed out that the CIS law-enforcement bodies use the Unified Central Data Base in the Russian Interior Ministry's Main Department on Fighting Illegal Drug Trafficking, which was created by joint efforts and contains over 400,000 information units.
More than 3,500 people were detained during unprecedented mass protests that swept across all of Russia in support of Alexey Navalny on January 23