Prevalence of Injection Drug Use and HIV/AIDS in Russia

"There is some controversy over the number of narcotic drug users in Russia. Dr. Vadim Pokrovsky of the Federal AIDS Center said that estimates of the number of active drug users in Russia in February 2004 ranged from 1 to 4 million, and he believed the high end of that range reflected the reality. On February 20, 2004, Alexander Mikhailov, the deputy director of the State Drug Control Committee (SDCC), a federal body, was cited in Pravda as saying that Russia had over 4 million drug users, and that the "gloomy prediction" of his office was that Russia could have over 35 million drug users by 2014. In early January 2004, the executive secretary of the Commonwealth of Independent States, which includes twelve former Soviet states, predicted that in 2010 the twelve countries would have 25 million drug users of whom 10 million would be living with HIV/AIDS, the vast majority in Russia."


Human Rights Watch, "Lessons Not Learned: Human Rights Abuses and HIV/AIDS in the Russian Federation," April 2004, Vol. 16, No. 5, pp. 14-15.