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White House claims success in drug war

Oct. 2, 2007 at 7:42 AM

MEXICO CITY, Oct. 2 (UPI) -- A critic of U.S. drug policy dismissed government claims that cocaine supplies from Mexico have been disrupted by increased drug enforcement.

"Law enforcement agencies claiming successes in this anti-drug battle is somewhat illusory," Larry Birns of the nonprofit Council on Hemispheric Affairs told The Washington Post in a story published Tuesday.

A new White House report said greater enforcement by Mexico and the United States has caused cocaine shortages in 37 U.S. cities, raising cocaine prices from a national average of $95.89 a gram during the first quarter of 2007 to $118.70 in the second quarter, the Post reported.

Birns, a Washington-based critic of U.S. drug policy, said the numbers represent "seasonal" blips."

"The long-term trend is prices remaining constant or going down," Birns told the Post.

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