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Bolivia Cites Anti-Coca Efforts

BOLIVIA / 4 MAY 2011 BY ELYSSA PACHICO EN

Security forces have eradicated over 3,200 hectares of coca in Bolivia so far this year, reports national newspaper La Razon.

This is a record eradication rate for the first four months of the year, said Interior Minister Sacha Llorenti, adding that the government is on its way to surpassing last year's eradication total of 8,200 hectares.

According to the U.S. State Department's 2011 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, the eradication of 8,200 hectares in 2010 was offset by the growth of coca production elsewhere in the country. Bolivia's current legal amount of coca production is 12,000 hectares, although the government has pushed to increase that amount to 20,000.

The government also announced the deployment of 200 police officers to Santa Cruz department, in order to support anti-drug operations there.

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