China calls on US to reduce demand for opioids

China calls on US to reduce demand for opioids
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China on Monday called on the U.S. to reduce its demand for opioids, saying the Trump administration should work to combat the use of the synthetic drug fentanyl, among other drugs. 

"It's common knowledge that most new psychoactive substances (NPS) have been designed in laboratories in the United States and Europe, and their deep-processing and consumption also mostly take place there," the deputy chair of China's National Narcotics Control Commission told reporters on Monday, according to CNN. 

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"The U.S. should adopt a comprehensive and balanced strategy to reduce and suppress the huge demand in the country for fentanyl and other similar drugs as soon as possible," Liu Yuejin continued. "When fewer and fewer Americans use fentanyl, there would be no market for it."

A congressional report, citing law enforcement, said in 2017 that China was the top source of fentanyl in the U.S. 

However, Liu said the U.S. should still be held responsible. 

"The U.S. should strengthen its crackdown on distributors, traffickers and drug-related criminal rings," he said. "It should investigate and arrest more lawbreakers."

President TrumpDonald John TrumpJustice Department preparing for Mueller report as soon as next week: reports Smollett lawyers declare 'Empire' star innocent Pelosi asks members to support resolution against emergency declaration MORE labeled the opioid crisis as a national public health emergency last year and revealed his plan to combat opioid use in March.

The White House announced earlier this month that it was launching an ad campaign that would work to draw more attention to opioid abuse among young people and warn against its dangers. 

Trump also discussed the issue with Chinese President Xi Jinping during his visit to China last year.