President Bush said yesterday he was troubled that Canada had become a source of potent marijuana and a key ingredient to the illegal drug methamphetamine for the United States.
"The president cited his concern that Canada is a primary source of pseudoephedrine, which is exported to the United States and used in clandestine drug laboratories to make methamphetamine, and that Canada is an increasing source of high-potency marijuana," the White House said.
In Ottawa, the federal minister in charge of law enforcement said Canadian police shared U.S. concerns and had already taken "some fairly major steps" to tackle the organized crime gangs that run much of the marijuana trade.
Bush outlined his concerns in an annual report in which he graded the cooperation of countries on fighting illegal drugs. It concluded that Guatemala, Haiti and Burma, also known as Myanmar, are not doing enough to crack down on drug production and trafficking.
The report, summarized by the White House, also cited an "alarming increase" in the quantity of the illegal drug ecstasy entering the United States, significant amounts of which it said were made in the Netherlands.
Canada and the Netherlands were not cited as countries failing to cooperate. Bush identified the major drug-transit or drug-producing countries as Afghanistan, the Bahamas, Bolivia, Brazil, Burma, China, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Laos, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Thailand, Venezuela and Vietnam.