In the occasion of the World Day to Combat Drugs , a conference was held in Basra, south of Iraq, where a group of finest Iraqi psychiatrists had gathered and discussed the terrible rise of the phenomenon of drug addiction in Iraq after the war. During this convention , the doctors called for the establishment of a medical center for treatment and rehabilitation of drug addicts .
The director of the Department of Mental Health in Basra Health Authority, Dr.Aqeel Al-Sabbagh, stated that the conference included many researches on this phenomenon, which indicate that after the occupation of Iraq many cases of addiction to substances that were not available in Iraq, such as cannabis, cocaine, were documented. These substances are produced by Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan . Dr. Al-Sabbagh also stated that the limited access to Alcohol has contributed to the sharp increase in drug dependence between the addictive patients.
He pointed out that Iraq is still a vital conduit for international drug smuggling from Iran to some Gulf countries.
Dr. Al-Sabbagh added that Basra recorded high rates of addiction, while it still lacks a specialized medical center for treatment and rehabilitation of addicts. So the drug addicts who are wishing to receive medical treatment, are referred by the doctors to mental illness departments, where this is their one and only resort .