Can Yemen kick its qat habit?
Can Yemen kick its qat habit?Activists raise awareness about the widely used drug
An anti-government protester chews qat, a mild stimulant, in his tent at Taghyeer Square, where thousands of protesters have been camping for eleven months to demand the ouster and trial of Yemen's President Ali Abdullah Saleh, in Sanaa December 31, 2011. REUTERS/Khaled Abdullah
Yemeni activists and netizens observed Jan 12 as “A Day Without Qat.” Qat is a natural narcotic regularly chewed as a stimulant. The plant is grown in the Arabian Peninsula and is a large part of Yemeni culture, but many believe it has hindered the country’s progress. Recently, the Netherlands announced plans to ban the use and import of qat. The online campaign #NoQatJan12 aims to educate people about the drug’s damaging effects to health and society.
Here are some highlights of the conversation around the web: