While Japan has one of the lowest numbers of drug users in the world, according to officials, drug use in Japan has reached new highs. Marijuana, amphetamines, and ecstasy are becoming increasingly popular and easier to attain.
Naoto Takeuchi, of Japan’s National Police Agency, said “In the past three years one third of smuggled drugs came from China and another third where from North Korea”. This is proving to be a major concern for officials and the general population of Japan.
The government of Japan estimated that in 2010, there were at least 2.76 million Japanese people who had used illegal drugs. Even though this is only about 2.9 percent of the population, for a country that had relatively no drug problem only 15 years ago, this is a large increase. Most of Japan’s drug users are men and women who are in their twenties and many have claimed to have first tried drugs while backpacking in countries like India.
Currently, amphetamines are the most abused drugs in Japan. Cocaine, LSD, ecstasy, and heroin are also available and are gaining popularity. Japanese officials claim that many junior high school students inhale glue, paint thinner, and solvents; unfortunately, many of these students do turn to amphetamines for a stronger high.
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