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Inside Bangladesh's methamphetamine problem

Booming regional drugs trade takes its toll on country's youth

A sign at NONGOR treatment center encourages patients, many of whom are addicted to yaba, to steer clear of drugs. Bangladesh has seen the use of yaba soar in the last decade. (Photo: Nathan A. Thompson)

COX'S BAZAR, Bangladesh -- Methamphetamine has become an increasingly corrosive influence in Bangladesh, with the number of pills seized by the authorities spiralling from the thousands into the tens of millions in just a few years.

Local authorities confiscated 81,000 tablets in 2010, according to the government's Department of Narcotics Control which estimates that by 2016, the figure had risen to 29.5 million.

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