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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

News in Brief

Drug Deaths Put at 30,000

As many as 30,000 Russians die every year from drug abuse, Federal Drug Control Service head Viktor Ivanov said Tuesday.

The official figure for drug-related deaths is around 10,000 annually, but unofficial estimates put the number as high as 30,000, Ivanov said, Interfax reported.

As many as 2 million Russians, or nearly 2 percent of the population, are addicted to drugs, Ivanov said.

Ivanov called for new legislation allowing addicts to choose a compulsory treatment program instead of jail, but said prison sentences for drug traffickers should be stiffened. (MT)

Russia May Quit Council

Russia may quit the 47-nation Council of Europe if the credentials of its delegation to the Council's Parliamentary Assembly are suspended, State Duma Deputy Konstantin Kosachyov, the head of the delegation, told Vedomosti.

Twenty-four members of the assembly requested a review of the delegation's credentials because of the war in Georgia last month. (Bloomberg)