Colombia resumes anti-coca spray dropped over cancer fears
Colombia will resume using weed killer to destroy illegal coca crops less than a year after suspending its use due to cancer concerns.
Defense Minister Luis Carlos Villegas said Monday that instead of dumping glyphosate from American-piloted crop dusters, the herbicide will now be delivered manually by eradication crews on the ground.
President Juan Manuel Santos' banning of glyphosate last year was heralded by leftists who've compared the two-decade-old program to U.S. use of Agent Orange over Vietnam.
But conservative critics warn that without glyphosate the country will soon be awash in coca.
After six straight years of declining or steady production, the amount of land under coca cultivation in Colombia jumped 39 percent in 2014 and again in 2015 to 159,000 hectares (392,000 acres), according to the U.S. government.
© 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.