Asia

Myanmar's dark drugs problem

Updated 2:11 AM ET, Wed December 3, 2014
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IMG_1198 addicts are kept in the compound for up to three monthsIMG_1198 addicts are kept in the compound for up to three months
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Men sit around a rehabilitation center in Myitkyina. At least a half dozen faith-based rehabilitation centers have sprung up around the town in the last two years. At these facilities, addicts aren't treated with methadone, instead they receive "the words of Jesus." Tim Schwartz/CNN
Addicts in one rehab camp say heroin and other drugs are bought and sold in the open in an outdoor market near the jade mines. "We can get drugs easily everywhere in Hpakant," No San says. "All of the miners take drugs. It's not strange for us." Tim Schwartz/CNN
Patients at the Youth for Christ Center spend their first week in rehabilitation overcoming drug withdrawal symptoms while locked in a prison-like room called the "prayer room." Tim Schwartz/CNN
You don't need to go far in Myitkyina to see used needles and other drug paraphernalia. Syringes are scattered throughout the town, including here on the banks of the Irrawaddy. Tim Schwartz/CNN
The graveyard in Waingmaw is a popular place for local addicts to gather. Community leaders say as many as 70% of young people use drugs in Kachin State. Tim Schwartz/CNN
Syringes left after use in the graveyard. Hundreds -- if not thousands -- of empty syringe wrappers could be seen around crypts and tombs, as well as used syringes and glass vials. Tim Schwartz/CNN
CNN came across two men in the graveyard who hastily hid their needles. One of them said he could buy a dose of heroin for as little as four U.S. dollars. "If I have more money, I will use more [heroin]," he said. "There are no limits if I have money." Tim Schwartz/CNN