HARRISBURG, Pa. (WTAJ)– Legislation presented by U.S. Senators Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) and Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) looks to hold accountable countries that are facilitating America’s fentanyl-fueled opioid crisis.
“Nations where fentanyl traffickers and producers operate freely, are on notice: help stop the illegal flow of fentanyl into our country or face consequences for your complicity in the opioid crisis,” said Senator Toomey. “After losing far too many Americans to fentanyl and other opioids, it is beyond time we hold countries accountable for allowing fentanyl to be produced and exported to the U.S. I appreciate Senator Hassan working with me on this critical amendment, and I look forward to the Senate passing and the President signing this legislation into law.”
The legislation is included in Congress’ annual defense policy bill. It requires the United States to publicly identify countries that are major producers or traffickers of illicit fentanyl something that the government already does for heroin, marijuana, and cocaine.
“Let there be no mistake, the inaction of the Chinese government in tackling fentanyl trafficking has hurt communities right here in New Hampshire,” said Senator Hassan. “When I visited China, I called on Chinese officials to take swift action. Two years later, China still needs to do more to combat drug trafficking — and the U.S. will continue making sure we hold China and other bad actors accountable for pushing this lethal, dangerous drug to our borders. The fact that our bill was included in this year’s NDAA reflects the severity of the threat that the substance misuse crisis poses to the safety and security of our communities, and I look forward to seeing the NDAA passed and signed into law.”
Illicit fentanyl-exporting countries would risk losing certain American taxpayer-funded foreign aid unless they schedule fentanyl and others like it as a class and take steps to prosecute drug traffickers within their borders.
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