of fentanyl traffickers, drug of discord between Beijing and Washington, sentenced in China

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This drug, 50 times stronger than heroin, killed 32,000 Americans in 2018.

It is rare enough to be underlined: China and the United States collaborate. Nine people were sentenced by the Chinese courts on Thursday, November 7, for fentanyl trafficking, a drug that is wreaking havoc in the United States and which Washington accuses China of being the world's largest producer. It is this opioid that killed the singer Prince in 2016. It is the first cause of overdose in the United States – 32,000 Americans died in 2018.

The investigation is the first, on a fentanyl case, between the US and Chinese authorities to be successful, according to the court. A trafficker was sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve – a sentence usually commuted to life imprisonment. Eight others involved in the trafficking of this synthetic drug received jail terms ranging from six months to life imprisonment.

This drug, 50 times stronger than heroin, is one of the elements of the trade war between Beijing and Washington. Regularly, the American president Donald Trump criticizes the supposed laxity of Beijing against this drug. In response, he imposed punitive tariffs on Chinese products this summer.

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