In December Russian border guards have detained 40 transgressors at the Tajik-Afghan border, said the press service of the Russian border troops in Tajikistan. They prevented 5 attempts of border transgression. There were three armed conflicts between Russian border guards and outnumbering violators. Once border guards were fired at from Afghan territory. In addition, Russian border guards have seized more than 80 kilogrammes of drugs, including 55 kilogrammes of heroine, at the Tajik-Afghan border in December. They have discovered three caches with drugs and ammunition. In December 2001 border checkpoints handled 26,500 people, including about 24,000 foreigners.
The remarks from the Pope came as "a very strong step towards degradation," "given the rather massive nature of homosexuality" among the Catholic clergy.