European Union

Health Impact of Opiate Use

(Health Impact of Opiate Use) "The first and most direct impact of opiates is on health, including heroin-related deaths. Opiates (including synthetics) account for 35% to almost 100% of all drug-related deaths in the 22 European countries that have provided data, and over 85% in 11 of those countries.69 In addition, heroin abuse by injection contributes to high rates of serious diseases such as hepatitis B, hepatitis C and HIV.70 The HIV epidemic among injecting drug users continues to develop at varying rates across Europe.

European Union - Data - Sources of Heroin Trafficked to European Union

(Sources of Heroin Trafficked to European Union) "Heroin is the most common opioid on the European drug market. Imported heroin has historically been available in Europe in two forms: the more common is brown heroin (its chemical base form), originating mainly from Afghanistan. Far less common is white heroin (a salt form), which historically came from South-East Asia, but now may also be produced in Afghanistan or in neighbouring countries.

Legal Distinctions Between Drugs and Amounts

(Legal Distinctions Between Drugs and Amounts) "In Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Spain, Ireland, Italy, Cyprus, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, Romania and the UK, the penalty for a drugs offence officially varies according to the nature of the substance involved. Thus the law in those 13 countries instructs or requests the judicial authorities to distinguish between drugs when prosecuting.

Estimated Prevalence of Use of New Psychoactive Substances and 'Legal Highs' in the EU

(Estimated Prevalence of Use of New Psychoactive Substances and 'Legal Highs' in the EU) "Insights into the use of new drugs are provided by the 2014 Flash Eurobarometer on young people and drugs, a telephone survey of 13,128 young adults aged 15–24 in the 28 EU Member States. Although primarily an attitudinal survey, the Eurobarometer includes a question on the use of ‘substances that imitate the effects of illicit drugs’.

Definitions

(Definitions) "According to our convention ‘decriminalisation’ comprises removal of a conduct or activity from the sphere of criminal law. Prohibition remains the rule, but sanctions for use (and its preparatory acts) no longer fall within the framework of the criminal law (elimination of the notion of a criminal offence).

Prevalence of HIV/AIDS in the EU

(Prevalence of HIV/AIDS in the EU) "In the EU/EEA [European Union/European Economic Area], 28,038 HIV infections were diagnosed in 2011 and reported by 29 EU/EEA countries, a rate of 6.3 per 100,000 population when adjusted for reporting delay [1]. The overall rate for men was 8.7 per 100,000 population and 2.8 per 100,000 population for women. The highest rates (per 100,000 population) were observed in Estonia (27.3), Latvia (13.4), Belgium (10.7) and the United Kingdom (10.0). The lowest rates were reported by the Czech Republic (1.5) and Slovakia (0.9).

International Comparison of Homicide Rates

(International Comparison of Homicide Rates) "With averages of over 25 victims per 100,000 population, Southern Africa and Central America are the sub-regions with the highest homicide rates on record, followed by South America, Middle Africa and the Caribbean, with average rates of between 16 and 23 homicides per 100,000 population (see figure 1.3). This sub-regional picture has hardly changed since 2011.

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