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Afghan heroin trafficking via Kazakhstan decreased

Kazakhstan Interior Ministry did not agree with the statement of the European Union that Kazakhstan's law-enforcement services manage to confiscate only a small portion of heroin that is trafficked by drug-dealers from Afghanistan, Interfax-Kazakhstan reports.

“In fact it is difficult to give any exact numbers. We only suppose, that up to 90 tons of heroin are transported from Afghanistan along the northern route. But maybe more or maybe less. The majority of drugs is destined for Russia and Europe, some part of it maybe stays in Kazakhstan. I think we have been evaluated incorrectly. They need to consider our abilities and our work,” deputy head of Drug Business Countering Department of Kazakhstan Interior Ministry Iryskeldy Dzhandarbekov said.

Earlier head of the EU Delegation to Kazakhstan Norbert Jousten said at the regional meeting of the managing commission of the CADAP (the Central Asia Drug Action Programme) that Kazakhstan's authorities confiscate only 3 percent of the total traffic of Afghan drugs.

According to Dzhandarbekov, over 22 tons of drugs were seized in 2011. “Compared to last year, these are very good results. Jointly with Russia, we constantly monitor the situation and compare the drugs confiscated in Kazakhstan to the ones seized in Russia. I agree that our calculations are different from the ones of the EU. But our estimations cannot be 100% correct either,” he added.

Transit flow of Afghan heroin via Kazakhstan is fairly small, thanks to tightening criminal liability for drug crimes in Kazakhstan. Dzhandarbekov reminded that starting from 2008 the criminals can get a life sentence for distribution of especially large amounts of drugs in Kazakhstan. “A lot of people were brought to responsibility and thus, this channel of drug trafficking was practically closed. That's why transit is made through Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan: these are the countries located closer to Afghanistan. Speaking of trafficking, we have discovered 260 drug cases last year. This year there were 80 cases of trafficking in 9 months,” he said.

Dzhandarbekov noted that heroin is not carried in large portions right now, drug-dealers are looking for ways to transport drugs via Kazakhstan's drug addicts. Major state policy is in place to reinforce southern borders.
24 october 2011, 16:08
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Afghan heroin trafficking via Kazakhstan decreased
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