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Colombian leader calls for fresh strategy to combat drug trafficking

Colombian President Gustavo Petro has called for a fresh global strategy to combat illegal drug trafficking.

Speaking at his inauguration, the country's first ever left-wing leader declared the "war on drugs" a failure.

Hundreds of thousands of people died in Colombia's decades-long civil war, fuelled in part by the narcotics trade.

The 62-year-old former Bogota mayor and ex-rebel fighter were elected in June on a radical manifesto promising to fight inequality and ban new oil projects.

Mr. Petro told a crowd of his supporters in Bogota that it is time for a new global convention that "accepts the war on drugs has failed."

"It has left a million dead Latin Americans in 40 years," he said, "and it leaves 70,000 North Americans dead by overdose each year."