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Kazakhstan Interior Minister on complications in countering drug business

20 ноября 2012, 13:44
©RIA Novosti
©RIA Novosti
Kazakhstan Interior Minister told about complications in countering drug business, Tengrinews.kz reports.

According to Kalmukhanbet Kassymov, heroin prices have gone up significantly in the recent years.

"If 5 years ago heroin cost around $5-8 thousand per 1kg, this year, according to our information, the price at the black market reaches $17-18 thousand per kilo," Minister said in the Majilis Lower Chamber of the Parliament of Kazakhstan.

"As for the drug business, as you know, we have two problems in this area: the first one is transit of Afghan heroin and the second one is our own base in Shu valley of Zhambyl oblast," Kassymov said.

Kazakhstan is currently implementing the second program (for 2012-2016) called to protect Kazakhstan's southern borders from drug trafficking. The program's funding, around 6 billion tenge ($40 million) is aimed mainly at enhancement of border service and customs authorities.

"We are working with all our criminals, interacting via special services of Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. But I can tell you that many drugs are transported in bulky goods, by air and in freight cars that we don't have any access to. That's why we are enhancing the customs and border services and, I can say, that we already have achieved good results: our employees find the hiding places with the use of special equipment, the places that we could not detect before," the Minister said.

Besides, Kassymov raised the so-called "issue of 2014" when the majority of the troops of the international coalition will be withdrawn from Afghanistan.

"The Security Council was held on 2014. There are issues. You know that Afghanistan is our problem, this is the Northern route. According to the UN, around 50 tons of drugs pass through this northern route and Kazakhstan is on its way. Of course, it all depends on the harvest in Afghanistan, but we have to protect ourselves," Minister said.

According to Kalmukhanbet Kassymov, over 3 thousand drug crimes were committed in Kazakhstan, inclulding 1,900 sales. 23 tons of drugs, including 101.7kg of heroin, were seized. 16 special operations, i.e. so-called controlled supplies, were performed, as well as jointly with Kyrgyzstan Interior Ministry. 9 organized criminal groups that committed 60 drug crimes were neutralized with seizure of almost 800kg of drugs, including 32kg of heroin.

By Renat Tashkinbayev

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