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Country Reports - Somalia through Zambia

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Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs
2011 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR)
Report
March 3, 2011



Somalia

Somalia is the world's quintessential failed state. A fragile transitional federal government controls only portions of the country's capital and remote pockets of some regions. That government is besieged by a classic insurgency, led by U.S.-designated foreign terrorist organization, al-Shabaab. Many ministries exist in name only, or have non-functioning, mostly unpaid staff. There is no court system to speak of, and policing is rudimentary. Any laws that do exist are currently unenforceable given the security threat to the government and its lack of capacity. The financial system in Somalia operates almost completely outside government oversight on the black market, or via international money transfer companies known as hawalas. The USG lead for Somalia, U.S. Embassy Nairobi’s Somalia Unit, has no credible state partner with which to engage on drug control issues.

Somalia does not play a major role in the production, trafficking, or consumption of illicit narcotics or precursor chemicals associated with the drug trade. Somalia's narcotics financing is centered on the khat trade. Khat is a leafy plant grown regionally and chewed by Somalis, and citizens of other regional states in the Horn of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, as well as in parts of Asia. It imparts a mild amphetamine-like high, manifesting in excitement, euphoria, and suppressed appetite. Although it is a controlled substance in much of the world, khat is legal in Somalia, and has aspects of a local traditional practice. Khat is grown in Kenya, Ethiopia, Yemen and Uganda, imported mostly by plane, and sold throughout Somalia. Most khat proceeds go back to khat transporters based outside of Somalia in cash or via money transfer companies. It is highly unlikely that khat money is laundered in Somalia because khat proceeds are not illegal and opportunities for legal investment are few given Somalia's weak economy.

There is no information related to drug-related currency transactions through Somalia's financial institutions (such as they are). To the extent Somalis are engaged in the drug trade in the United States, some of those proceeds are probably transferred to Somalia through hawalas in the form of remittances, however, informed observers speculate that the amounts are relatively small.

There is virtually no information sharing on narcotics and terrorist financing with the United States or other developed countries. There are no joint formal investigations ongoing of which we are aware Somalia does not officially encourage or sanction drug trafficking, and there is no evidence that senior officials are engaged in such activities. Somalia is not a party to the 1988 United Nations Drug Convention.


South Africa

A. Introduction

An expected increase in narcotics trafficking in South Africa related to the 2010 FIFA World Cup did not take place, an outcome that may be attributed in part to South African Central Drug Authority (CDA) and NGO substance abuse awareness efforts. The CDA is planning to create a national narcotics data base as the foundation for its 2012-2017 National Master Plan. While authoritative nationwide narcotics data are not yet available, available research, police statistics, and press reports confirm that South Africa continued to battle drug trafficking and abuse with uneven results.

Cannabis is the only illicit drug cultivated in South Africa, but it is widely cultivated across the country for both domestic use and export. The estimated total annual yield for cannabis cultivated in South Africa is 4528 MT. South Africa also produces significant quantities of methaqualone, methcathinone, and methamphetamine, primarily for domestic consumption. The cultivation and trafficking of khat is a growing problem in South Africa, especially among the Somali community.

South Africa’s well developed financial, communications, and transport systems unquestionably facilitate drug trafficking. As drug trafficking escalates worldwide, South Africa is being drawn in as an important transshipment connection. Despite efforts to improve border control and security, South Africa is still used to transship heroin, cocaine, precursor chemicals, and amphetamine-type stimulants. South Africa remains an attractive base for organized crime groups, both domestic and foreign, including from Nigeria, Pakistan, India, Europe, and China. According to a study published in April 2010 by the Institute for Security Studies (ISS), a local think tank, organized crime in Southern Africa is on the rise, and South Africa has become the central hub for the spread of organized crime across southern Africa. The ISS study reported that South Africa's sea and airports are used as drop-off points for drugs and other illegally imported goods that are to be distributed to the rest of Southern Africa.

Substance abuse of alcohol and drugs is a major social problem in South Africa and a major factor in crime. In Western Cape Province, in particular, but also in other provinces, increased gang violence is directly linked to an illegal drug sub-culture. Methaqualone (known as Mandrax) and marijuana are widely traded in Western Cape, but the drug of choice among dealers is crystal methamphetamine, commonly known as “tik”. According to CDA, citing reports from national police and the Department of Correctional Services, 60 percent of the road deaths in South Africa are related to substance abuse. There are no reliable statistics on fatalities caused by long-haul truck drivers who take stimulants to stay awake, but CDA suspects this to be a significant problem. According to CDA, 69 percent of sexual offenses and 50 percent of drowning deaths also involve substance abuse. South Africa's most widely used drug is alcohol, followed by marijuana, then by methaqualone (Mandrax), often used in combination with marijuana (locally called "white pipe"). In Kwazulu-Natal, crimes from robbery to murder in townships and informal settlements have been associated with intoxication caused by a smoked street drug concoction, known locally as “Whoonga”, consisting of crushed antiretroviral drugs mixed with marijuana and rat poison. CDA also cites the abuse of prescription drugs as a growing problem in South Africa. There is a lack of information on the substance abuse problem in rural areas.

According to South Africa's crime statistics report released in September 2010, drug related crime increased nationwide. Arrests for drug-related crimes nationwide rose from 117,172 from April 2008 to March 2009 to 134,840 from April 2009 to March 2010 (ca, 15 percent). Arrests for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs also increased from 56,165 to 62,939 for the same period. Western Cape Province was the most affected by this trend, recording 60,409 drug-related arrests between April 2009 and March 2010, 44.8 percent of all arrests and a 12 percent increase in drug-related arrests over the previous year. It is unclear whether the increased incidence of drug-related crimes was a result of more active policing in 2010 or solely of an increasing problem related to drug gang culture. The South African Police Service (SAPS) made visible policing a priority policy in advance of the World Cup, a factor that CDA credits with helping to prevent a spike in drug crime during the World Cup. At the same time, the overall conviction rate for drug crimes remains very low as the overall narcotics crime threat continues to increase.

South Africa's Prevention of Organized Crime Act (POCA, 1988), particularly its robust asset forfeiture provisions, is proving to be a useful tool in the war against illicit drugs. South Africa is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments/Policies and Trends

1. Institutional Development

In addition to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, South Africa is party to the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances, and the 1961 UN Single Convention as amended by the 1972 Protocol. South Africa is a party to the UN Convention on Corruption and the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its three protocols. The U.S. and South Africa have bilateral extradition and mutual legal assistance treaties in force. The U.S. and South Africa also have a Letter of Agreement on Law Enforcement and Counter-Narcotics Assistance and a Customs Mutual Legal Assistance Agreement.

The SAPS and the CDA coordinate on a comprehensive anti-drug strategy referred to as the Mini Drug Master Plan (MDMP) and report jointly to cabinet on its implementation every year. In keeping with South Africa's international commitments, the MDMP seeks to: deter drug crime through visible policing, collect actionable intelligence on groups involved in drugs, obtain information on the movement of precursor chemicals, coordinate international cooperation to address drug trafficking, police ports of entry, and investigate transnational and domestic drug trafficking. CDA also operates under a National Master Plan 2006-2011, which featured an inter-agency approach coordinated at the provincial and national level to prevention, treatment, and intervention. CDA is working on a 2012-2017 National Master Plan that will include a nationwide data base.

2. Supply Reduction

The SAPS Cannabis Eradication Program continued to destroy cannabis crops under cultivation, particularly in the Eastern Cape and Kwa-Zulu Natal provinces. South African and Brazilian law enforcement officials have recently improved cooperation to break a significant cocaine smuggling nexus between the two countries. South Africa had increased its drug seizures of Nigerian-controlled trafficking between South America and Europe via South Africa at OR Tambo International Airport. There are promising early signs that increased control and regulation of chemical precursors, coupled with several major meth lab busts, may begin to disable the country's methamphetamine industry as uncontrolled imports of ephedrine continued to fall, while pseudoephedrine imports stabilized at low levels.

Examples of some important drug cases:

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

Education and the promotion of public awareness about the dangers of drug addiction remained a high priority for the government. The South African Police Force continued its visible crime deterrence policy by organizing visits and counternarcotics lectures in schools with assistance from the Department of Education and NGOs. According to statistics compiled by the South African Community Epidemiology Network on Drugs, over 75 percent of drug treatment patients nationwide are male, which suggests that substance abuse is more common among men than women, but also may suggest that women with substance abuse problems may not be getting treatment. South African National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (SANCA) programs highlighted issues that affect female addicts and break down barriers to effective substance abuse treatment for women. UNODC programs on drug prevention are targeting the unique drug gang culture of Western Cape. In keeping with the 1988 UN Drug Convention, South Africa seeks and accepts international cooperation to address more effectively the various aspects of illicit traffic in narcotics and promote drug abuse prevention.

4. Corruption

In July 2010, some two years after charges were first filed, the former national commissioner of the SAPS, Jackie Selebi, was found guilty of corruption, and subsequently sentenced to 15 years imprisonment, pending appeal. The judge who presided over the trial concluded that the prosecution had proven that Selebi received bribes from a convicted drug trafficker. The drug trafficker, who was a state witness for the prosecution, claimed to have paid over R1.2 million (approx. U.S.$175,000) to Selebi in bribes since 2000.

The conviction of Jackie Selebi, a man who led the SAPS for nine years, was regarded in South Africa with palpable relief, yet also with some ambivalence. One casualty in the two years leading to conviction was the Directorate of Special Operations (referred to as the “Scorpions”). The Scorpions, officially disbanded on 23 October 2008, had been internationally renowned for pursuing high-profile investigations, even against powerful figures like Selebi. The Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DCPI), or the “Hawks,” has replaced the Scorpions. Critically, whereas the Scorpions answered to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), the Hawks now fall under the SAPS hierarchy. Critics have questioned if the Hawks can be as effective, and as free from political influence, as the Scorpions.

As a matter of policy, the government of South Africa does not encourage or facilitate illicit production or distribution of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, nor does it encourage or facilitate the laundering of proceeds from illegal drug transactions, nor does its senior officers encourage or facilitate drug trafficking or money laundering. South Africa actively combats drug trafficking. Laws and enforcement bodies are in place to root out narcotics-related corruption. However, newspaper reports on police corruption appeared regularly, ranging from the coverage of the Selebi trial to allegations of “police gangs” at the municipal level. The frequency of corruption-related reports suggests that some degree of corruption may facilitate drug trafficking in South Africa. Local headlines also alleged nepotism, favoritism, and suspicious procurement practices among police ranks.

Bheki Cele was appointed the new National Commissioner of the SAPS in July 2009. Cele has pledged to stamp out police corruption. The fact that former Commissioner Selebi was held accountable offers a tempered success story in the fight against corruption for South Africa and the continent.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

The State Department Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement is supporting a substance abuse prevention program for women in partnership with the South African National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (SANCA) and is considering collaboration with the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime on a drug prevention initiative aimed at Western Cape Province. The Drug Enforcement Administration Pretoria Country office works in conjunction with local law enforcement to investigate and interdict cross-border narcotics trafficking, with a particular emphasis on U.S.-destined drugs.

D. Conclusion

South Africa's National Drug Master Plan 2006-2011 responds to the 1988 UN Convention on Drugs, and provides an inter-agency structure headed by the CDA in the Department of Social Development to coordinate among government departments and non-government stakeholders. The National Master Plan aims “to implement holistic and cost-effective strategies to reduce the supply and consumption of drugs and to limit the harm associated with substance use, abuse, and dependency in South Africa.” While the plan is clearly articulated and fully elaborated, implementation has lagged, due in part to the absence of reliable national statistics, but also to lack of funding and staff. CDA is going back to the drawing board to design a more robust strategy for 2012-2017 based on a national data base and to include more attention to community-based approaches and to the needs of rural South Africa. When the current plan was launched in 2006, it spoke of "a pressing need …for the training of doctors, nurses, social workers, and psychologists on substance abuse and other additions." That need is more urgent in 2010 than when the plan was drafted. Similarly South Africa's need for increased interdiction, an increase in conviction rates for drug crimes, more widely available treatment, and effective prevention have outpaced efforts to address these myriad interconnected problems. Increased coordination between the Central Drug Authority and international donors, augmented by intensive provincial and local action, is urgently needed to accelerate implementation of South Africa's National Drug Master Plan. In Western Cape Province, the epicenter of the problem, over the past five years, the provincial government has appointed a Substance Abuse Coordinator who has prepared a blueprint for establishing substance abuse policies. This stepped up effort needs to be replicated across the country.


South Korea

Narcotics production and abuse is not a major problem in South Korea. South Korea has very strict laws regarding illicit drugs. Conviction for possessing, using, or trafficking illicit drugs can result in long jail sentences and large fines. Despite its reputation for not having a drug abuse problem, however, the country has become a transshipment location for drug traffickers. With one of the region's largest ports, Busan, located on its Southeast tip, South Korea has become an attractive location for illegal drug shipments coming from countries that are more likely to attract a contraband inspection upon arrival. Reports indicate that an undetermined quantity of narcotics is smuggled through South Korea en route to the United States and other countries. South Korea is a party to the 1988 U.N. Drug Convention.

As a matter of government policy, the government of South Korea does not encourage or facilitate illicit drug production or distribution, nor is it involved in laundering the proceeds of the sale of illicit drugs. According to the Korean Customs Service, there were 104 drug interdictions of persons, carriers, cargo, and mail into and out of the country in the first six months of 2010, resulting in the seizure of approximately 4.3 kg of illicit drugs worth approximately $7.3 million. The number of interdictions increased by approximately 51 percent over the same period last year, but the dollar value of the drugs seized decreased by approximately 82 percent due to unusually large drug busts in the first six months of last year. The drugs seized included methamphetamine, marijuana, and previously rarely seen substances such as JWH-018-artificial marijuana, salvia divinorum, kratom, and triazolam.

According to the Supreme Prosecutors' Office, Korean authorities arrested 4,670 individuals for drug violations in the first six months of 2010, an approximately 15 percent decrease from 5,488 arrests in the same period last year. Of the arrests, 63.8 percent were for use, 18.1 percent were for sale, and 4.6 percent were for possession of illicit drugs. Psychotropic drugs were the most widely used illicit drugs, accounting for approximately 74 percent of drug arrests. Marijuana seizures were 36.9 kg. Each District Prosecutor's Office, in conjunction with local governments, conducts annual surveillance into suspected illicit marijuana growing areas during planting or harvesting time periods to limit possible illicit diversion. According to the Supreme Prosecutors' Office, as of September this year, Korean authorities seized 2,877 marijuana plants. Opium poppy production is illegal in South Korea, but poppy continues to be grown in Gyeonggi Province where farmers have traditionally used the harvested plants as a folk medicine to treat sick pigs and cows. Opium is not normally processed from these plants for human consumption. Korean authorities continue surveillance of opium poppy-growing areas. According to the Supreme Prosecutors' Office, as of September this year, Korean authorities seized 41,294 opium poppy plants

The Ministry of Health and Welfare Affairs conducts programs to treat drug addicts at 23 hospitals nationwide. The treatment is free and patients can remain in the program for up to one year. The South Korean government also funds the primary NGO involved with drug treatment, Korean Association Against Drug Abuse (KAADA), which has twelve branches throughout the country. KAADA provides education on the risks and dangers of drugs, as well as counseling, sports therapy, and Narcotics Anonymous programs. KAADA also runs a free rehabilitation center where drug addicts may live up to a year at the center for intensive treatment and receive follow-up services after their stay.

The South Korean authorities are mindful of the challenges they face in combating transshipment of illicit drugs in and out of the country and actively engage with law enforcement authorities from other countries in drug control efforts through various regional and international organizations, including the U.N., Anti-Drug Liaison Officials Meeting for International Cooperation (a homegrown organization of drug enforcement officials posted to 20 different embassies in Seoul), and Association of Southeast Asian Nations. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Seoul Country Office and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) officials continue to work closely with South Korean narcotics law enforcement authorities on international drug interdiction, seizures of funds and assets related to illicit narcotics trafficking, and the diversion of precursor chemicals in South Korea and in the Far East region.


Spain

A. Introduction

The Spanish government ranks drug trafficking as one of its most important law enforcement objectives and Spanish drug enforcement continues to maintain excellent relations with U.S. counterparts. The 2009-2016 National Strategy on Drugs (NSD) provides the overall framework, priorities, and direction for Spain’s drug-related efforts. NSD implementation is done through two broad coordinating mechanisms – the Ministry of Interior’s Intelligence Center against Organized Crime (CICO in Spanish), which coordinates supply reduction initiatives, and the Ministry of Health’s National Program for Drugs (PNsD in Spanish), which leads demand reduction initiatives. Overall coordination between the bodies is robust, with strategic coordination handled through the President’s Council of Ministers and working-level coordination achieved through co-location of CICO and PNsD.

Spain remains the single most important entry point for cocaine imported into Europe from South and Central America. Spain is also one of Europe’s most important consumption markets for cocaine. In 2010, there was a sharp upswing in containerized cocaine shipments from South America. Container seizures in the first half of 2010 exceeded all of 2009. Spain also remains a major transit point to Europe for hashish from Morocco, and Spain’s North African enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla continue as principal points of departure for hashish and marijuana headed for Europe. Heroin trafficking and abuse in Spain remains relatively low, with the majority of heroin continuing to arrive via the “Balkan Route” from Turkey.

Coca leaf is not cultivated in Spain although small-scale “kitchens” for secondary extraction of cocaine from cocaine base is a growing concern, a trend borne out in the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addition’s (EMCDDA) 2010 report in which Spain accounted for all such dismantled labs (31) in 2008. Illicit refining and manufacturing of synthetic drugs in Spain is minimal. Between 2008 and 2010 Spanish police discovered only one MDMA-ecstasy lab. Ecstasy transshipping to the U.S. through cities in Spain remains a trickle. Some cannabis is grown in country, but the seizures and investigations by Spanish authorities indicate the production is minimal. Opium poppy is cultivated licitly under strictly regulated conditions for research, and the total amount is in any case small. Precursor chemicals are effectively controlled through a variety of mechanisms, including the Ministry of Economy’s Commercial Export Registry, the Voluntary Collaboration Agreement between the Government and Chemical and Pharmaceutical Industry, and CICO’s national registry of pre-cursor manufacturers.

According to the EMCDDA 2010 State of the Drugs Problem in Europe report, Spain remains one of Europe’s biggest cocaine consumers; however, consumption levels are declining due to effective demand reduction programs and the country’s weak economy. A national Household Survey of Drugs and Alcohol in Spain 2009-2010, released in November 2010 showed that the use of cocaine among the population (15-64 years of age) declined for the first time in 15 years, falling from 3 percent to 2.6 percent. In the 2009-2010 period, Spain was among the top three consumers of cannabis in the European Union (EU), with roughly 10 percent of the Spanish population consuming it on a regular basis; with rates double that among the 15-34 age groups.

Spain is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

In 2010 inter-ministerial coordination continued to improve, the decade-long downward trend in drug-related deaths continued (9 deaths in 2010), outreach to and treatment of drug addicts remained robust (see Section Three), and overall drug interdictions increased (see Section Two). The current NSD emphasizes citizen involvement in anti-drug campaigns to prevent and/or lower consumption and delay the age for initial consumption and takes an aggressive stance on drug addict treatment. Based on the NSD, the PNsD also has a separate three-year Plan of Action on Drugs (2009-2012) focused on demand reduction, close program coordination, and research and education.

Spain continued to upgrade and expand its Integrated External Surveillance System (Spanish acronym SIVE), adding further mobile units and opening a central command and control center in Madrid to improve SIVE coordination and communication. This high-tech system monitors the Mediterranean and Atlantic trafficking corridors for Spain with the objective of more efficient interdiction. The additional fixed radar sites previewed in the 2009 INCSR for Tarragona and Pontevedra did not become operational in 2010. Due to the investment and maintenance costs associated with fixed radar locations, the government is prioritizing mobile unit investments.

On December 23, 2009, the Council of Ministers approved the usage criteria for funds collected through the sale of seized drug-trafficking assets, and established an inter-ministerial oversight board to disburse these funds. In the first nine of months of 2010, the Board collected 500,000 euro through six auctions. Funding areas include security force initiatives, drug prevention programs, awareness campaigns, drug-addict support, recovery, and reinsertion programs, and international programs to fight money laundering. CICO officials confirmed that the program has been very effective and relatively efficient, and that overall coordination of drug-related efforts has improved through the inter-ministerial mechanism.

In June 2010 Spain modified its Penal Code for drug-related offenses. The most significant change was the creation of a separate penal category for drug offenses committed by organized crime. For drugs causing serious physical harm (a distinction made under Spanish law), prison sentences range from 9-12 years with fines up to four times the value of the confiscated drugs. For all other drugs, 4.5-10 years and fines of double the drug value may be imposed. For those not connected with organized crime, Spain actually shortened the maximum incarceration period from 3-9 years (serious harm drugs) to 3-6 years and to 1-3 for other drugs. Judges now also have the option to deport foreign non-resident aliens sentenced to less than six years. Shorter sentences and deportation are designed to deal with Spain’s “drug mule” phenomenon. Today, non-resident aliens account for 28 percent of the Spanish prison population.

In 2010, previously signed bilateral instruments to implement the 2003 U.S.-EU Extradition and Mutual Legal Assistance Agreements finally entered into force. The updated MLAT allows for the establishment of Joint Investigative Teams (JITs), the exchange of banking information, and video conference-based testimonies. The two countries have also signed a Customs Mutual Assistance Agreement. Spain is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1961 UN Single Convention as amended by the 1972 Protocol and the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances. Spain is also a party to the UN Convention against Corruption and the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its three protocols.

In 2008 Spain was added to the list of non-traditional countries authorized to export licit narcotic raw materials (NRM) for medicinal use to the United States. This enabled Spain to join the other “non-traditional” NRM exporters, Australia, France, Hungary, and Poland, as the only countries allowed to supply approximately 20 percent of the NRM required annually by the United States. Traditional exporters India and Turkey have preferred access to 80 percent of the NRM market. Spain is not a significant production zone for synthetic drugs. While not a significant producer of MDMA/ecstasy, limited production of the drug has been reported in Spain.

Spain is a UNODC Major Donor and a member of the Dublin Group, a group of countries that coordinates the provision of counternarcotics assistance.

2. Supply Reduction

Spanish National Police, Civil Guard, and Customs Services, along with autonomous regional police forces, increased their operational tempo in 2010. By June 2010, seizures of cocaine, heroin, ecstasy and “Speed” were on track to exceed 2009 figures. In addition security forces conducted a number of major operations against synthetic drug suppliers. Spain continues to account for 70 percent the hashish seizures in Western and Central Europe and is world’s fourth largest seizer of cocaine.

In 2010, Spanish authorities again benefited from close coordination with the U.S. DEA Madrid Country Office and also increased joint operations with European and Latin American nations, most notably in the area of cocaine being smuggled in commercial shipping containers. A joint operation between the Spanish Police and Italian Carabinieri in June netted 23 people involved in a drug ring and the seizure of 14 kilos of heroin, 750 kilos of hashish, smaller quantities of cocaine and marihuana and 12 vehicles. Also in June, Spain supported local authorities in Argentina and Brazil to dismantle one of the largest cocaine trafficking networks between South America and Spain, arresting 50 people in Madrid, Alicante, Galicia, and Argentina, and seizing 5.5 million Euros, 65 vehicles, and 6 fast drug smuggling boats. A total of 3,400 kilos of cocaine was seized in Argentina and Brazil. In September, Spanish Police again collaborated with local police in Argentina and Brazil in the seizure of 4,000 kilos of cocaine. In October, Spain supported Moroccan authorities to dismantle a cocaine trafficking network linked to Columbia, Venezuela, and several West African countries. Thirty-four people were arrested in the operation.

Exploiting the country’s close historic and linguistic ties with Latin America and its extensive coastlines, Spain remains the major gateway to Europe for cocaine coming from South America, especially by Columbian traffickers. The DEA office confirmed that a growing portion of Colombian cocaine continues to be sent first to Africa and then smuggled northward into Spain while the majority still enters directly into the peninsula. A recent investigation by Moroccan authorities revealed Spanish Drug Trafficking Organizations have sent Spanish operatives to Africa to oversee the receipt of large cocaine shipments in Africa as well as the subsequent distribution of those shipments into Spain and Europe. Further, Venezuela, Argentina, and Brazil emerged in 2010 as key transit zones for containerized cocaine shipments, a transport modality that increased by 20 percent 2010.

Spanish authorities recorded several large seizures of cocaine in 2010. In March Security Forces seized more than one thousand kilos of cocaine, diluted in barrels of fruit pulp that were in a container sent by boat from Colombia. Also in March, the Civil Guard seized 7.1 tons of cocaine in an action coordinated by the EUROPOL and the European Justice Cooperation Unit (EUROJUST), with U.S. cooperation. In April, another 1,425 kilos of cocaine were seized hidden inside boxes of bananas that came from Ecuador. In June, 2,656 kilos of cocaine were seized in a sail boat from Tenerife that came from Colombia, via Morocco and in September the Police intercepted a British-flag sail boat with 1,515 kilos of cocaine. In mid-October, 175 agents participated in an operation that seized 7 drug “supermarkets” in Madrid. In late November, Spanish Police and Civil Guard dismantled a cocaine transshipment network in Valencia that utilized containers, arresting 18 people and seizing a total of 2,227 kilos of cocaine.

2010 was also an active year for hashish seizures although the overall total remained consistent with previous years. All year long and across the country, Security Forces recorded large seizures of hashish in 2010, beginning with the seizure of 3,000 kilos in January, followed in March and April by seizures of 4,000 and 2,300 kilos, respectively. Two Civil Guards were arrested in the March operation. In July, there were a series of seizures, including 3,600 kilos seized in a yacht in Cartagena, 1,500 kilos in Almería, and 1,300 kilos in Alicante. In August and September, Security Forces seized 3,050 kilos in Almeria and 2,850 kilos in Gibraltar. Also in August, in the largest operation thus far in 2010, the Civil Guard seized 186,150 kilos (186.1 MT) of hashish in two boats near Málaga. In mid-November, Security Forces seized 20,000 kilos of hashish in the largest sea operation against drug trafficking in the last ten years. As part of the operation, three Dutch nationals were arrested. Hashish trafficking is controlled by Moroccan, British, and Portuguese smugglers and, to some extent, nationals of Gibraltar and the Netherlands.

Although overall quantities remain small, Spanish law enforcement officials remain concerned about the minor increase in the quantity of heroin coming into Spain. The majority of heroin continues to arrive into the country via the “Balkan Route” from Turkey. In January, National Police intercepted a car in Tui (Pontevedra) with 12 kilos of heroin; in February, another 9.5 kilos were detected in Galicia, and in September National Police dismantled one of the largest heroin trafficking networks in Spain, seizing 30 kilos in Catalonia and the Canary Islands.

Spanish Police also had several significant successes in the disruption and seizure of synthetic drugs in 2010. In February, police dismantled the first ever “travelling” laboratory for synthetic drugs, seizing 21,000 pills and sufficient quantities of precursor chemicals to produce another 40,000 pills. In March, the Civil Guard seized 155,000 pills of ecstasy, in April, National Police seized 15,000 pills, and in August, the Civil Guard seized 38,000 pills. In June, in what the Spanish Government claims is the largest seizure of synthetic drugs in Europe in 20 years, police successfully ended an eight-month operation in Navarra, arresting 20 people and seizing 140 kilos of synthetic drugs (118 kilos of “Speed-ATS” and 21 of MDMA), enough for an estimated 1,250,000 doses. In November, security forces took down another major synthetic drug network, arresting nine people and seizing 11 kilos of MDMA and other substances.

Seizures:

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010
(June 30)

Heroin (kg)

631

275

242

271

174

454

227

548

300

149

Cocaine (MT)

34

18

49

33

48

47

38

28

25.3

15.8

Hashish (MT)

514

564

727

794

670

451

653

682

444.5

194

Ecstasy (pills x 1000)

860

1,400

772

797

573

408

491

535

404

313

LSD (units)

9,062

4,445

Speed (kg.)

148

141

3. Drug Abuse Awareness Demand Reduction and Treatment

Although trending downwards, usage rates of cannabis and cocaine among Spanish citizens remain amongst the highest in Europe, especially among the 15-34 age group. In this category, according to EMCDDA’s 2010 report, Spain was second to the Czech Republic in cannabis use (18.8 percent in 2008 and 13.4 percent in 2010 sample) and second to the UK in cocaine usage (5.5 percent in 2008 and 1.9 percent in 2010 sample). However, according to Spain’s recently completed Household Survey of Drugs and Alcohol in Spain 2009-2010, the use of cocaine among the general population (15-64 years of age) declined for the first time in 15 years, falling from 3 percent to 2.6 percent. In contrast, the usage of synthetic drugs such as Amphetamines, ecstasy and hallucinogenic substances is not common in Spain.

Spain’s NDS identifies prevention as its principal priority and uses its 3-year (2009-2012) Action Plan on Drugs as the primary operational plan, implemented through the PNsD. The PNsD closely coordinates its demand reduction programs with the Spanish National Police, Civil Guard, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Public Administration and Spain’s autonomous communities, which receive central government funding and provide drug addiction treatment programs. In 2010, PNsD implemented more than 15 workshops and seminars, placing special emphasis on programs aimed at Spanish youth and school children. Within the EU, its Strengthening Families Program has been heralded as a model to reduce predictors for subsequent drug use such as disruptive behavior at school and symptoms of depression. For example, in “Support the Youth” prevention priorities, enforcement initiatives targeted small drug-dealing operations around schools and leisure areas. PNsD also works through a network of civil society organizations. In 2010, 1.873 million Euros funded the drug prevention and rehabilitation programs of 45 private non-governmental organizations (NGOs).

Through this coordination and collaboration, Spain has created a robust treatment and rehabilitation system consisting of more than 2,700 methadone dispensaries, 500 walk-in clinics, 130 community therapy centers, and 50 faith-affiliated treatment units. In addition, Spain has over 50 detoxification centers and the communities of Cataluña y Andalucía have heroin substitute (Diacetylmorphine, a chemical very close to heroin itself) trial clinics. Spain has also invested significant resources in “risk reduction” programs, including social service emergency centers that offer an array of services such as counseling, food, and laundry help; mobile treatment centers; needle exchange centers; “safe houses” which offer drug users a safe and sanitary alternative to drug houses; and special pharmacies that provide needle exchange and whose staff are specially trained to interact with drug users.

4. Corruption

Spain neither encourages nor facilitates illicit production or distribution of narcotic or psychotropic drugs or other controlled substances, or the laundering of proceeds from illegal drug transactions. There is no evidence of corruption of senior officials or their involvement in the drug trade, but there continue to be isolated cases involving corrupt law enforcement officials who were caught facilitating drug trafficking. On June 22, 2010, National Police arrested José Mestre Fernández, director of the cargo terminal of the Barcelona port, and President of a holding company including more than 50 companies, for his alleged involvement in a drug-trafficking operation that brought 202 kilos of cocaine into Spain. Another 14 people were arrested along with him. 2010 also saw the arrest of 2 Civil Guards arrested in Cadiz and Hulva for providing information to traffickers seeking to smuggle more than 4,000 kilos of hashish.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

Spain and the U.S. enjoy a robust counternarcotics information-sharing relationship and the U.S. has excellent bilateral and multilateral cooperation with Spain. DEA worked very closely with its Spanish law enforcement counterparts during 2010, collaborating on at least a dozen cases that resulted in the seizure of more than 4,000 kilos of cocaine. In addition, plans are underway to allow Spain access to the DEA’s Centers for Drug Information Database, which will further enhance coordination efforts. Spain participates in ICE’s Container Security Initiative in the ports of Barcelona, Valencia, and Cadiz. Although primarily focused on counter-terrorism, the program has also proven highly effective for drug interdiction measures. ICE agents report that relations with port authorities continue to improve.

In June, the Spanish reciprocated for a September 2009 visit by senior Civil Guard officials to meet with Coast Guard and JIAFT-S officials in the U.S., by hosting JIAFT-S Commander Admiral Lloyd in June for meetings with the Civil Guard, Spanish Navy and CICO officials. Anticipated in the 2009 report, in January 2010 a delegation of senior counternarcotics officials from CICO visited JIATF-S, SouthCom, and the Drug Enforcement Administration.

D. Conclusion

Because of its geography, its proximity to Northern Africa and its strong cultural, historical, and commercial ties to South America, Spain remains an important transshipment point for narcotics entering Europe. To combat this, Spain is placing greater emphasis on international coordination and collaboration, not only with the U.S., but with other European nations and South America. The number of joint operations executed in source countries increased in 2010, thereby interdicting product before it arrives in Spain. In addition, Spain has drug liaison officers in source countries and at JAITF-S. All law enforcement organizations have special investigation units for combating drug trafficking organizations and, at the central level, coordination between CICO and PNsD, the two main Spanish counter-narcotics bodies on the supply and demand side, respectively, is very effective. With the addition of the new SIVE control center in Madrid, Spain’s coastal coordination has also improved.


Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka has a relatively small-scale drug abuse problem among its population and is not a significant producer of narcotics or precursor chemicals. Sri Lanka plays only a minor role as a transshipment route for heroin from India. Government of Sri Lanka (GSL) officials work to raise awareness of and vigilance against efforts by drug traffickers attempting to use Sri Lanka as a transit point for illicit drug smuggling. The lead agency for counternarcotics efforts is the Police Narcotics Bureau (PNB). The GSL does not, as a matter of policy, encourage or facilitate the illicit production or distribution of any controlled substances or the laundering of proceeds from illegal drug transactions.

Sri Lanka is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention and the 1990 SAARC Convention on Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances. There is a bilateral extradition treaty between the United States and Sri Lanka which entered into force on Jan 12, 2001. There is, however, no bilateral mutual legal assistance treaty between the U.S. and Sri Lanka.

In the past year, the PNB recruited more officers, resulting in increased investigations and interdictions, and trained and deployed anti-narcotics officers in all districts nationwide. The PNB also conducted in-service counternarcotics training for police outside of the conflict-affected north and east and drug awareness programs in schools on a regular basis. Over the past year, 39 drug prevention and enforcement officials from Sri Lanka participated in local and regional training opportunities. The PNB continued to cooperate closely with the Customs Service, the Department of Excise, and the Sri Lankan Police to curtail illicit drug supplies moving into and through the country. As a result, GSL officials arrested 2244 persons on charges of using or dealing heroin and 4019 persons on cannabis charges. Police and Customs seized 137 kg of heroin (including 35 kg detected at the Port of Colombo, which had arrived from Pakistan), 20,270 kg of cannabis, 23 kg of hashish and 26 kg of methamphetamines in 2010. In addition to its Colombo headquarters, the PNB has one sub-unit at the Bandaranaike International Airport near Colombo, staffed with operational personnel and a team of narcotics-detecting dogs.

Some cannabis is cultivated and used locally, but there is little indication that it is exported, and the police work to locate and eradicate cannabis crops. Police officials state that the international airport is a major entry point for the transshipment of illegal narcotics through Sri Lanka. Police note that the “party drugs” found in Colombo social venues are believed to be imported from Thailand.

The GSL welcomes U.S.-sponsored training for criminal investigative techniques and management practices. Sri Lanka also works with regional and international partners on narcotics issues, particularly the Colombo Plan, a regional organization with special expertise in drug prevention and treatment. The SAARC Drug Offense Monitoring Desk (SDOMD), located within the PNB, serves as a clearing house for SAARC countries to input, share, and review regional narcotics statistics. GSL officials maintain steady contact with counterparts in India and Pakistan, origin countries for the majority of drugs in Sri Lanka. The PNB, the National Dangerous Drugs Control Board (NDDCB) and the several NGOs carry out awareness and education programs at schools and for special at-risk populations. The NDDCB regularly conducts outreach among employee groups, school children and teachers, and community leaders. In addition, the military defeat of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), better known as the Tamil Tigers, in May, 2009, may have changed the dynamics of the drug trade in South Asia. Since 1983, the LTTE was involved in bulk delivery of heroin and cannabis from producing areas in Asia to consuming countries. Mumbai was the key link in the LTTE drug trade. While Sri Lanka's coast remains highly vulnerable to transshipment of heroin moving from India, observers expect a dramatic reduction in drug-related activity in the region.

The U.S. government will continue to aid the Sri Lankan police in its transition to community-focused policing techniques. The U.S. also expects to continue its support of regional and country-specific training programs, particularly through the Colombo Plan. The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration attaché based in New Delhi visited Colombo in March, July, and December 2010 to coordinate anti-drug trafficking activities with the local police and the Embassy. The DEA attaché also met with the Interagency Law Enforcement Working Group at the U.S. Embassy, and will continue to visit and work with Sri Lankan drug enforcement personnel.


Sudan

Sudan is not an important illicit drug-producing or drug-transit country. However, because of vast arable land, areas of lawlessness, ineffective border controls, impoverished conditions, and a vulnerability to corruption, the potential exists for Sudan to cultivate and traffic illegal drugs on a far greater scale.

In Sudan, the central government unit responsible for liaison and coordination of national drug control policy is the Drug Combat Administration. The Ministry of Health is the competent authority for the issuance of authorizations and certificates for the import and export of licit narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances. Sudan is party to the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs as amended by the 1972 Protocol, the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances, and the 1988 UN Drug Convention. Sudan has signed cooperative agreements with Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey for fighting drug trafficking. Sudan's Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, passed in 1994, is designed to fulfill that country's treaty obligations under these conventions. Sudan is also a party to the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime.

Sudan has a government-controlled licensing system for the manufacture, trade, and distribution of licit narcotics-based pharmaceuticals. There is a prescription requirement for supply or dispensation of preparations containing narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances. The law does not require warnings on packages or accompanying leaflet information to safeguard the users of preparations containing narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances.

Cannabis is the most prevalent illegal drug in Sudan. Other drugs abused include barbiturates, heroin and cocaine. No data relating to prevalence or use is available according to the United Nations. Cannabis is cultivated in commercial quantities in the southern areas of Darfur (the largest producing area in Sudan), southern part of Blue Nile State, in Gedaref State and in the Upper Nile and Bahr El-Ghazal regions. According to the Drug Combat Administration, Sudanese authorities in 2009 seized over 17 metric tons of cannabis and arrested over 8000 individuals on drug-related charges. The arrests were a two percent increase over 2008; seizures were down 73 percent from the 63 metric tons confiscated in 2008. Authorities from the Drug Combat Administration maintain that the increase in arrests and decrease in seizures reflects the effectiveness of a targeted campaign in certain areas of the country including the States of Khartoum, Northern Kordofan, Gedaref, El-Geziraa, Red Sea, River Nile and Southern Darfur.

Accusations by Sudanese government officials that rebels groups in the country are using the sale of narcotics drugs to finance their operations have not been substantiated. Sudan does not officially encourage or sanction drug trafficking, and there is no evidence that senior officials are engaged in such activities.


Suriname

A. Introduction

Suriname is a transit zone for South American cocaine en route to Europe, Africa and, to a lesser extent, the United States. The Government of Suriname (GOS) is limited in its capacity to adequately control its borders due to inadequate resources, scarce law enforcement training and presence, the difficulty of policing the isolated interior terrain, official corruption, and a lack of international coordination. These conditions enable traffickers to move drug shipments across international borders and within the country by land, water, and air with little resistance.

Suriname’s sparsely populated coastal region and isolated jungle interior, together with weak border controls and infrastructure, make narcotics detection and interdiction efforts difficult. USG analysis indicates that drug traffickers use remote locations for delivery and temporary storage of narcotics. Cocaine shipments that enter Suriname via small aircraft land on clandestine airstrips that are cut into the dense jungle interior and/or sparsely populated coastal districts.

There is little evidence of drug production in Suriname. Limited quantities of cannabis are grown for personal use, and there is cocaine consumption among some sectors of the population.

Suriname is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, but its lack of chemical precursor controls continues to keep it from full conformity with the Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

Suriname held national elections in May, and swore in new President Desi Bouterse in August, 2010. A controversial figure, President Bouterse led a 1980 coup that installed a military government from 1980-89 and was convicted in-absentia, in 1999, of narcotics trafficking to the Netherlands by a Dutch court. He did not serve the 11-year sentence due to a Suriname law prohibiting the extradition of Suriname nationals. Bouterse appealed the conviction, calling it politically motivated, but it was upheld by the Dutch court system.

As a matter of policy, the GOS is committed to combating illegal narcotics trafficking. However, the GOS’ practical ability to identify, apprehend, and prosecute narcotics traffickers remains inhibited by a lack of resources, inadequate legislation, drug-related corruption, bureaucratic hurdles, and an overburdened court system.

The National Anti-Drug Council (NAR) continued to make progress in the implementation of the National Drug Master Plan (2006-2010), which addresses both supply and demand reduction but did not achieve all of its goals. For instance, the GOS moved forward on, but did not complete, legislation to control precursor chemicals, with technical assistance and training from the Organization of American States’ Inter-American Drug Abuse Commission (CICAD), as required by the 2006-2010 Master Plan. The GOS also has no tracking system to monitor precursor chemicals and is unable to detect the diversion of precursor chemicals for drug production.

Draft legislation on terrorist financing, which is required for Suriname to join the Egmont Group (an informal group of Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs) designed to facilitate international cooperation) remains pending approval at the National Assembly. The Unusual Transactions Reporting Center (MOT/FIU) and Financial Investigation Team (FOT), formed in 2009 to specialize in tracking illegal funding streams, received training from the U.S. government (USG) on asset forfeiture strategies. Suriname’s new government publicly supports the Plan, including the Ministries of Health and Justice and Police.

Suriname is party to the 1961 UN Single Convention as amended by the 1972 Protocol, and the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances. Suriname is also a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention and has accordingly passed legislation that conforms to a majority of the Convention’s articles with the notable exception of precursor chemical control provisions. Suriname is a party to the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its protocols against Trafficking in Persons and Migrant Smuggling. It is party to the Inter-American Convention against Corruption and Migrant Smuggling and the Inter-American Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters. Since 1976, the GOS has been sharing narcotics information with the Netherlands pursuant to a Mutual Legal Assistance Agreement. In1999, the U.S. and Suriname completed a comprehensive bilateral maritime counternarcotics enforcement agreement which remains in force.

Current Suriname law prohibits the extradition of its nationals and this is upheld in practice. Suriname has deported foreign nationals, including Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) members to Colombia in 2008, and has cooperated with regional counterparts on ongoing drugs-for-arms network investigations. Suriname has an e-Trace agreement with the United States and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms and Tobacco, which conducted training in 2010 for Surinamese law enforcement and prosecutorial officials on E-Trace systems and procedures.

Suriname also has bilateral agreements to combat drug trafficking with neighboring countries Brazil, Venezuela and Colombia.

2. Supply Reduction

In 2010, the GOS seized 342.7 kilograms (kg) of cocaine, 32.5 liters of liquid cocaine, 146 kg of marijuana, 4.5 grams of hashish, and 2 grams of heroin. During 2010, 542 people were arrested for drug-related offenses, compared to 454 arrests in 2009. The GOS focuses significant narcotics interdiction resources on Suriname’s western border with Guyana, a key route for cocaine trafficking by land, air, and water. In 2010 this effort yielded limited success, with fewer interdictions than in 2009. One officer posted at this checkpoint was arrested on corruption charges and this investigation is ongoing.

Officials at Suriname’s international airport, Johan Adolf Pengel International, have been working with the GOS and a Canadian partner to implement an airline radar and air trafficking control system. This system will enhance capacity to track illegal flights throughout the country, and is expected to be operational in the first quarter of 2011. Training and technical assistance on this radar system is ongoing within the implementation contract.

The GOS uses a urine testing machine and three counterdrug-trained canines at the airport to identify suspected drug mules. Dutch assistance provides an additional area to monitor suspected mules and interdict the drugs they carry. A downward trend continued in the number of drug mules arrested -- from 99 in 2007, 66 in 2008, 49 in 2009 to 34 in 2010. Drug mules who evade detection in Suriname may be arrested upon arrival in Amsterdam, where inspection of all bags and passengers from Suriname is routine.

According to U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) officials, the use of foodstuffs to move narcotics out of Suriname continued in 2010, with cocaine discovered in prunes, dried fish, souvenirs, and syrup bottles. The bulk of the cocaine movement out of Suriname to Europe and Africa is via commercial sea cargo, including both larger boats and smaller fishing vessels that carry drugs out to sea and transfer them to large freight vessels in international waters.

There were several drug seizures in 2010 of cocaine found in sea cargo originating from Suriname including: 166 kilograms from a container at the port of Tilbury, in the United Kingdom, where the drugs were concealed within industrial machinery parts; 266 kilograms discovered by Pakistani Customs at the port of Karachi in a shipping container of plywood; and 147 kilograms of liquid cocaine discovered by Dutch Customs officials, concealed within a cargo container of syrup. Investigations into each of these seizures continued at the end of 2010.

The GOS is working to establish a Coast Guard, and at this time it has limited maritime capability to interdict drug traffickers at sea. The GOS owns ten vessels for maritime operations, but only two were operational in 2010. It does not operate a radar system to track movements at sea.

Nationalities arrested in Suriname in 2010 for drug-related offenses included Dutch, Brazilians, Colombians, Venezuelans, Guyanese, and Nigerians.

There is local cultivation of cannabis in Suriname but little data exists on the amount under cultivation. There is no evidence that it is exported in significant quantities.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

In 2010, the NAR conducted a number of activities surrounding the International Day Against Drugs, with a specific focus on youth and at-risk groups. In reaction to several cases of youth in performance groups being arrested for smuggling narcotics into the Netherlands when traveling for cultural performances, the NAR outreach specifically targeted youth in musical groups and brass bands. In 2010 the NAR continued its efforts to raise drug awareness by creating self-help groups, workshops, and partnerships with local stakeholders on youth and community outreach initiatives.

In collaboration with CICAD and the European Union, the NAR is working to set up a Drug Treatment Court, which would specialize in hearing defendants charged with drug use and drug-related criminal offenses. The judge would have the authority to have addicts undergo mandatory rehabilitation rather than enter the regular prison system. Three GOS participants attended a USG-sponsored exchange program in 2010, touring several U.S. cities to meet with local leaders and to study the drug treatment options and prosecutorial measures applied in the United States.

There is one government detoxification center which is free; other treatment centers are run by non-governmental organizations.

4. Corruption

During 2010, the GOS publicly maintained its commitment to combat narcotics trafficking and continued to apprehend and prosecute government officials for drug-related corruption. For example, two former police officers of the police Arrest Team were prosecuted 2010 for stealing cocaine from a police vault while it was being held as evidence from a large drug bust. The trial was ongoing in 2010. As a matter of government policy, the GOS does not encourage or facilitate illicit drug production or distribution, or the laundering of proceeds from the sale of illicit drugs. Civil servants, including police and military officers, are inadequately compensated and many are open to bribery. Two high level officials have previous convictions in absentia in The Netherlands on drug trafficking charges, including President Bouterse and Member of Parliament, Ronnie Brunswijk. France also has an outstanding arrest warrant for Brunswijk.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

The U.S. provides support to provide an impetus for Suriname to identify and dismantle drug trafficking operations and uphold its commitment to the 2006 anti-narcotics “Paramaribo Declaration.” The USG continues to encourage Surinamese participation in bilateral and multilateral counternarcotics initiatives, including the Caribbean Basin Security Initiative.

To strengthen the counternarcotics capabilities of Suriname’s Police and Customs agencies, the USG provides training and material support to several elements of the Korps Politie Suriname (KPS), Suriname’s national police force. DEA also continued to provide technical assistance to the KPS in narcotics and money laundering and investigations.

D. Conclusion

The United States encourages the Government of Suriname to build on previous efforts to increase counternarcotics capacity within its Police and Customs agencies. In particular, further dialogue with neighboring countries Guyana and Brazil to share best practices and better address interdiction and border control should be a top priority. Based on the amount of arrests this past year for drug-related crimes, the initial training and assessment for establishing a Drug Treatment Court is timely and the U.S. encourages further development of this program through CICAD. Suriname is also encouraged to continue to publicly maintain its commitment to combat narcotics trafficking and continued to apprehend and prosecute government officials for drug-related corruption,


Switzerland

A. Introduction

Switzerland is both a consumer market and transit route for illicit narcotics, but it is not a significant producer of illicit drugs. Federal Police believe that the majority of drug smugglers are legal and illegal immigrants, belonging to Swiss-based foreign criminal networks from Africa and the Balkans. The Swiss public continues its strong support for the government’s four-pillar counternarcotics policy of preventive education, treatment, harm reduction, and law enforcement.

In a country of approximately 7.7 million people, about half a million Swiss residents are thought to use cannabis at least occasionally. Roughly 30,000 people are addicted to heroin and/or cocaine, and more than 7 percent of the population uses a narcotic substance regularly. The latest estimates in 2007 show that 1.8 percent of the Swiss population above the age of 15 has consumed ecstasy at least once. Around 2.8 percent has used cocaine and, 0.7 percent has had experience with heroin. Cannabis, cocaine, and heroin still remain popular among drug addicts. Swiss police suggest that cocaine consumption is on the rise and remains the second most consumed drug following cannabis. Young drug addicts between 18-24 years of age are the largest users of amphetamines, LSD and ecstasy. Police are also concerned about the continuing trend by casual users to mix cannabis with other drugs.

A zero tolerance law against driving while under the influence of drugs (cannabis, heroin, cocaine, ecstasy) entered into effect on January 1, 2005. Currently, there is a broad consensus among political parties that there should be no legalization of narcotics. Switzerland is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

Since January 1, 2002, jurisdiction for all cases involving organized crime, money laundering, and international drug trafficking shifted from the cantons to the federal prosecutor’s office in Bern. Beginning January 1, 2002, it became illegal to advertise products that contain narcotic or other psychotropic substances without government approval. Violators who put human lives at risk face fines up to SFr 200,000 ($190,476) or imprisonment.

In addition to the heroin-assisted treatment (HAT) (please refer to section 3), discussions were held on the federal and cantonal level to expand the assisted treatment to cocaine. However, the discussions have not yet progressed to any concrete plans or projects. The political parties, to date, have not put forward any initiatives to legalize any drugs.

Government authorities enforce sentences against people dealing drugs such as cannabis. In August 2010, the Swiss Federal Court issued a verdict sentencing a person to 6 years of prison for having grown and sold 5 tons of cannabis. The convicted offender started a hunger strike in order to force his release. The Federal Court concluded that there is a substantial public interest in protecting the government authorities’ ability to enforce a prison sentence and therefore a prisoner may be force-fed when the person is facing the threat of severe and permanent damage.

Switzerland is not a significant producer of illicit drugs, with the exception of illicit production of high THC-content cannabis. After years of hemp shops selling a variety of cannabis products, under light cover of some claimed licit use, a federal court ruled in March 2000 that selling hemp products with a THC level above 0.3 percent was a violation of the narcotics law regardless of how the shop had labeled the hemp. Since then, police operations in all cantons have targeted the illegal production, traffic and sale of all cannabis products. Today, cannabis plantations and hemp shops no longer operate in the open, but have moved underground. In the past few years, there have been no important cases of domestic production of ecstasy or other synthetic drugs in Switzerland.

According to the Swiss Federal Police, there are three types of organized criminal groups in the country: West African networks involved in cocaine traffic; Albanian bands dealing in heroin and prostitution; and money laundering networks working from the former Soviet republics. Due to resident aliens, suspected (but not convicted) of drug dealing, that travel from canton to canton, several cantonal authorities have increasingly banned convicted drug dealers residing in another canton from visiting their cantons. They also prohibit convicted drug dealers from visiting certain areas, like railway stations (difficult) and schools (possible). If picked up by police, these dealers (mainly refugees from Eastern Europe and sub-Saharan Africa) are fined and “deported” to their canton of residency. If picked up again, they are jailed.

Deportation of foreign drug dealers to their home country is difficult because these immigrants often hide their true country of origin from the police (NB: cantonal police are responsible for deportations, not the Federal Office of Migration). When looking at cross-border cocaine smuggling, the Swiss Federal Police believe that many criminals involved use trains to transport drugs to and from Switzerland, Holland or Spain. Their nationalities include Swiss, Italian, Lebanese, West-African, South-East Europe, South American, and the Dominican Republic. The “mules” generally originate from Africa, South America, the Dominican Republic, or other European countries, most notably Spain and the Netherlands.

In 2009, 13 percent of all criminal offences in Switzerland were related to narcotics (85,742 cases). Consumption at 50 percent (43,272 cases) and possession at 38 percent (32,552 cases) dominated drug related incidents in Switzerland. Drug consumers were primarily arrested for consuming cannabis related products including marijuana (62%), stimulants including cocaine (12%), and opiates including heroin (12%). Males accounted for 76 percent of drug consumers, and 71 percent of consumers were Swiss nationals. Most of the arrests took place in Zurich, Bern, and Vaud.

Drug traffickers were primarily arrested for the sale of cannabis related products including marijuana (34%), stimulants including cocaine (31%), and opiates including heroin (18%). Males totaled 90 percent of traffickers, and 41 percent were Swiss nationals. Foreigners living permanently in Switzerland accounted for 21 percent of drug traffickers, whereas an additional 37 percent were non-resident traffickers from abroad including asylum seekers in Switzerland. The major cantons involved were Zurich, Bern and Vaud and Geneva.

A survey comparing the consumption of narcotics in 2002 and 2007 suggests that while cannabis consumption is decreasing, the consumption of cocaine is increasing. In 2002, 11.4 percent of 15 to 19 year olds indicated they had used cannabis. However, this number had dropped to 6.9 percent by 2007. During the same period, the consumption of cocaine increased from 2.5 percent (2002) to 3.8 percent (2007) for men and from 1 percent (2002) to 1.7 percent (2007) for women.

2. Supply Reduction

The Swiss government continued to focus on international cooperation in order to reduce the supply of narcotics to the Swiss territory. In response to the growing cocaine traffic to Switzerland, the Federal Criminal Police established a permanent working group with the Swiss border guards, different cantonal police forces, foreign authorities, INTERPOL and EUROPOL in 2009. The new working group focuses in particular on more efficiently combating cocaine traffickers from West Africa. The working group headed by the Federal Criminal Police coordinated 70 cases. The Federal Criminal Police supports the Cantons with operational, analytical and technical assistance in order to seek a holistic view of the cases as the investigations against smuggling and trafficking of narcotics are part of the cantonal competence.

In October 2010, Swissmedic, the Swiss agency for the authorization and supervision of therapeutic products, introduced a new category (“List E”) of narcotics. Prior to this legislation, Swissmedic required approximately one year to register new narcotics and to regulate, for example, research chemicals or designer drugs. This new category will allow Swissmedic to quickly designate new substances, which in turn will enable customs and police to confiscate substances that were previously considered too new and lacked legal ground to be confiscated as narcotics.

In 2009 (NB: Throughout this report, the latest official statistics available are for 2009) total reported drug arrests reached 49,859, up 4.8 percent from the 47,591 cases recorded in 2008. Drug arrests peaked at just over 50,000 in 2004. Cocaine seizures reached another record by nearly doubling to 560 kg from 284 kg in 2008 (in 2005 cocaine seizures had increased by 44 percent; 2004: +91 percent). Seizures of LSD amounted to 1.1 kg and 12,500 pills, amphetamines to 5.4 kg and 16,859 pills, and methamphetamine to 0.1 kg and 46,476.5 pills. Heroin seizures increased from 135 kg in 2007 to 200 kg in 2009. Seizures of ecstasy increased by 29 percent from 19,069 pills in 2008 to 24,587 pills in 2009.

To give a sense of drug abuse developments in Switzerland, some important or typical drug-related enforcement operations in 2009 are described below:

In January 2009, the cantonal police of the canton Vaud arrested members of a network smuggling heroin from Kosovo to Switzerland. Thirteen kilograms of heroin were seized in the Canton of Neuchatel. During the investigations between December 2008 and October 2009, 15 members of the network were arrested, 13 from Kosovo, 1 from Spain and 1 from Austria.

In February 2009, investigators in Zurich detained a 40-year-old Albanian. They confiscated five containers holding 10 grams of heroin each. During a subsequent search involving a 38-year-old illegal Albanian immigrant, police found 1,500 grams of heroin, 1,800 grams of heroin extenders (i.e., inert powder used to “cut” heroin), about 125 grams of cocaine, and $38,095 (44,000 SFr).

In March 2009, the cantonal police of Lucerne uncovered an international drug smuggling ring that had delivered approximately 5 kg of cocaine to the canton of Lucerne. The network is assumed to be based in Nigeria. The drugs were delivered from France and Holland and smuggled into the country by “body packers”. Police investigated 30 individuals allegedly related to the ring.

During a one year investigation by the Zurich cantonal police against a network from the Balkans, eight safe houses were raided and 44 people were arrested. An investigation against mainly Albanian and Serbian nationals led to the seizure of $324,000 (340,000 SFr). A 42-year-old Serb confessed to selling 2.5 kg of cocaine to various buyers. A total of 8.1 kg of heroin, 2.7 kg of cocaine, 14.3 kg of extenders, $490,000 (514,375 SFr), 12,000 Euros ($16,000), 11,500 U.S. dollars (12,000 SFr) and 10 handguns were seized.

The canton of Graubunden police concluded a comprehensive investigation of a network led by two Swiss heroin traffickers. The investigation revealed that the two individuals trafficked 1,500 grams of heroin which they bought from a supplier from Eastern Europe, who was also arrested.

Investigators of the Zurich cantonal police arrested three men in Zurich-Wollishofen and seized 350 grams of heroin, 850 grams of extenders and 7,770 SFr. One of the two Albanians had previously been arrested five times since 1995. The other men arrested were illegal immigrants. In an apartment of a 55 year-old Kosovar, heroin and extenders, cash and six mobile phones were seized

In June and July 2009, German border guards stopped two drivers in the German town of Schlatt am Randen for carrying large deliveries of khat in each car. About 240 kg of the khat was destined for Zurich.

In the Canton of Aargau, three asylum seekers from Nigeria between the age of 18 and 23 years were arrested for drug trafficking. One kilogram of cocaine was seized. They received the cocaine from Spain, Holland and directly from Nigeria. The cocaine was swallowed and transported in the stomach and intestinal tract of the asylum seekers. The police believe that the drug traffickers had travelled often from France to Switzerland via Geneva by train.

In September, in Bellinzona (Canton of Ticino), police seized 14 kg of heroin and arrested 3 suspects, a 35-year-old Bulgarian, resident in Bulgaria, and a 47 year old national from Serbia, living in Serbia and a 26 year old Swiss.

In the Canton of Basel-County police discovered in September a professional-scale hemp plant in a commercial property in Allschwil. In total, 1’596 plants were seized. A 37-year-old Italian national living in the region was identified as the plant operator and arrested.

The Zurich cantonal police and prosecutor concluded a complex investigation of a network of drug dealers. During the proceedings, a total of 41 persons were investigated, and cocaine, lidocaine (a local anesthesia used as an adulterant for cocaine), marijuana and several weapons were seized. Gang members came mostly from Eastern Europe. They specialized in deceiving other drug dealers, either by failing to pay or using counterfeit Euro currency imported from Italy. The members were also charged with armed robbery, extortion, coercion and threats - mostly related to drug offenses - during the period from summer 2007 to May 2008.

Between June and September 2009, the Zurich Cantonal Police and customs seized 112 kg of cocaine and 7 kg of hashish. Twenty-eight of the seizures occurred at the Zurich airport. The traffickers used various methods to smuggle the drugs including: mailing the narcotics (9 seizures), hiding narcotics in luggage (7 seizures), attaching the narcotics to their body or carrying them in underwear (5 seizures), soaking clothes in liquid cocaine (2 seizures), and swallowing the cocaine (2 seizures). In other cases, cocaine was smuggled in hollow clothes hangers and in an air mattress. In total, 19 people were charged, 16 men and 3 women from 12 different nations and ranging in age from 22 to 73.

In December, Zurich Cantonal police arrested a 27-year-old Dominican and seized 11 kg of cocaine from him. Investigations are still ongoing.

In a complex investigation lasting 2 years, the Zurich Cantonal police arrested 44 persons for trafficking or consuming drugs worth about 830,000 Swiss SFr ($790,000). Eleven hemp processing plants were closed down and 35 kg of marijuana were seized. The members of the group were themselves consumers of narcotics and sold hashish, marijuana, heroin, cocaine, ecstasy and amphetamines. The group consisted of 38 Swiss, 3 Germans and 3 Serbs.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

Switzerland focuses heavily on prevention and early intervention to prevent casual users from developing a drug addiction.

The Heroin Assisted Treatment (HAT) programs originally intended to end in December 2004 were provisionally extended until 2009. In November 2008, a vote by Swiss citizens formally institutionalized the HAT programs indefinitely and as a consequence the Federal Law on Narcotics was modified.

According to the modified law, the Cantons issue permits which allow them to participate in the program. The Federal Council is in charge of adopting special provisions to ensure that only heroin addicts, who have participated unsuccessfully in the past in other treatments can participate in the HAT program, which distributes heroin to addicts under medically controlled conditions.

Youth programs to discourage drug use cost Swiss taxpayers 2.8 million SFr ($ 2.67 million) annually according to the Swiss Federal Office of Public Health and focus their efforts on cannabis, alcohol and tobacco. In 2009, Swiss authorities purchased 228 kg of heroin for use by the HAT program at the 21 heroin distribution centers and 2 prisons. The heroin imported by the Swiss government costs SFr. 100-130 million ($95 – $124 million) each year, and originated from Tasmania, Turkey and/or France - all licit producers of opium products. The Swiss government is also treating 20,000 people with a replacement therapy of which 17,500 patients are treated with methadone.

The number of slots available in “heroin treatment centers” was 1,454. With 1,356 patients in December 2009 (+ 1.5% from 2008), the heroin distribution program was running at 92 percent of capacity. The average age of the participants was 35 years and 77 percent of the participants were men. The number of heroin addicts between 45-54 years of age is increasing and those under 35 years decreasing. Fifty percent of the patients are expected to remain in the program for at least two years and 20 percent of them at least 15 years. Sixty percent of the patients enrolled in the program were previously participating in methadone substitution programs.

Swiss officials report that in many cases, patients’ physical and mental health improved, their housing situation became considerably more stable, and they gradually managed to find employment. Numerous participants managed to reduce their debts. In most cases, contact with other addicts and the drug scene decreased. Consumption of non-prescribed substances declined significantly in the course of treatment.

Swiss authorities noted that dramatic changes have been seen in regards to crime. While the proportion of patients who obtained their income from illegal or borderline activities at the time of enrollment was 70 percent, the figure after 18 months in HAT was only 10 percent. According to the most recently reported statistics in 2008, 135 patients discontinued HAT, 50 percent of the patients changed the kind of treatment and 4 percent were dismissed for breaking rules of the program. Furthermore, 10 percent left the program and the “heroin treatment centers” lost touch with them, and eleven patients died.

The cost of the program during 2008 amounted to SFr 27 million ($26 million) for the treatment of the approximate 1,300 patients. Eighty percent of the cost of the program is covered by health insurance. The HAT program decreases the cost of health care since patients of the HAT program statistically on average stay less frequently in hospitals and use less medical treatment. The current average cost per patient-day at outpatient treatment centers came to SFr 57 ($54).

4, Corruption

As a matter of government policy, Switzerland does not encourage or facilitate illicit production or distribution of narcotic or psychotropic drugs or other controlled substances, or the laundering of proceeds from illegal drug transactions. Similarly, no senior government official is alleged to have participated in such activities in 2009.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

On March 15, 2004, Switzerland and the U.S. joined forces to curb the rise in illegal sales of prescription drugs over the Internet. The two countries called for international action in a resolution presented at the annual session of the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) in Vienna. The joint resolution stated that every country should introduce and enforce laws against the sale of narcotics and psychotropic drugs over the Internet.

Furthermore, the U.S. and Switzerland will continue to build on their strong bilateral cooperation in the fight against narcotics trafficking and money laundering. In particular, the U.S. urges Switzerland to use experiences gained in fighting terrorist money laundering to become more proactive in seizing funds from narcotics money laundering.

D. Conclusion

The decision to continue the Heroin Assisted Treatment Program indefinitely suggests that Switzerland is focused on the importance of reintegration of heroin addicts into society, and believes that this program will support that goal. The absence of political discussions on the legalization of narcotics, present during the last few years, suggests that there will be a tendency towards a stronger drug enforcement policy. One of the challenges will be to seize high content THC cannabis plants as the production of cannabis remains important for the domestic market. In regards to enforcement of trafficking, under the auspices of the Federal Police, closer cooperation between the Cantons and the Federal Police is being pursued. Furthermore, the reduction of supplies in synthetic drugs may be improved with the new provisions offered by Swissmedic.

http://www.nzz.ch/nachrichten/schweiz/auch_staenderat_spricht_sich_gegen_hanf-initiative_aus_1.687299.html

http://www.sucht-info.ch/de/infos-und-fakten/ecstasy/konsum/

http://www.tagesanzeiger.ch/schweiz/standard/Kokain-in-der-Schweiz-immer-populaerer--Cannabiskonsum-ruecklaeufig/story/28739349

http://www.bag.admin.ch/themen/drogen/00042/00629/00798/01191/


Taiwan

A. Introduction

Taiwan is not a major transit/transshipment point for illegal drugs destined for the United States or other countries; however, there are still instances when illegal drugs transit Taiwan. Because of Taiwan’s proximity to China, its long coastline, and its large container port in Kaohsiung, Taiwan is used as a transit and transshipment point for illegal drugs destined for international markets.

Taiwan continues to play an important role in international drug trafficking activities. Specifically, ethnic Chinese trafficking organizations with connections throughout Southeast Asia meet in Taiwan to discuss, plan, and organize drug shipments. Taiwanese drug traffickers operate throughout Southeast Asia, including in Hong Kong, China, the Philippines, Burma, and Thailand. Unlike large-scale drug trafficking organizations operating in other parts of the world, organizations operating at the wholesale and importation levels in Taiwan are not large, and they may be ad hoc as opposed to continuing criminal conspiracies.

Taiwan produces methamphetamine and remains a source for pseudoephedrine combination tablets destined for various Central American countries. Ketamine usage continues to increase, reflecting its popularity as a party drug among youth and because criminal penalties for ketamine usage are minimal.

Nonetheless, Taiwanese authorities continue to strengthen anti-illicit drug efforts with enhanced airport interdiction, thorough coast guard and customs inspections, surveillance, and other investigative methods.

Taiwan is not a member of the United Nations and, therefore, is not a party to the 1988 UN Convention. However, Taiwan authorities have amended and passed legislation consistent with the goals and objectives of the Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

In the absence of a single drug enforcement agency such as the U.S. DEA, the Ministry of Justice continues to lead Taiwan's counternarcotics effort with respect to manpower, budgetary, and legislative responsibilities. The Ministry of Justice Investigation Bureau (MJIB), National Police Agency Criminal Investigations Bureau (CIB), Customs, and Coast Guard also contribute to counternarcotics efforts and cooperate on joint investigations, openly sharing information with DEA and other Asia Pacific law enforcement counterparts.

A Mutual Legal Assistance Agreement (MLAA) has been in place between the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) and the Taiwan Economic and Cultural Representative Office (TECRO) since 2002, and this agreement provides for mutual assistance pertaining to the investigation, prosecution, and prevention of offenses and in proceedings related to criminal matters. This MLAA provides the primary basis for law enforcement cooperation between the U.S. and Taiwan.

2. Supply Reduction

Taiwan law enforcement agencies, including the MJIB, the CIB, Customs, and the Coast Guard Administration work together, as well as with numerous Hong Kong-based U.S. law enforcement agencies, to combat the importation of illicit drugs into Taiwan. Taiwan law enforcement officials also routinely share intelligence with regional counterparts in Japan, Hong Kong, Thailand, and the Philippines. Additionally, due to the amount of illicit drugs smuggled into Taiwan from mainland China, Taiwan authorities continue to seek increased drug enforcement cooperation with the People's Republic of China (PRC). Authorities also seek to establish a working relationship with Indian law enforcement in order to combat the significant amounts of ketamine entering Taiwan from India.

Statistics for the first nine months of 2010 indicate a significant increase in seizures in all classes of drugs. Using seizure data from the MJIB, National Police Agency, Department of Defense Chinese Military Police, and Coast Guard Administration, Taiwan seized almost 3000 kg (3 MT) of drugs, an increase of 83.6 percent from the same period of the previous year (January to August). Authorities seized 70 kg of heroin, 227 kg of amphetamine and marijuana, 2260 kg of ketamine, and 433 kg of hydroxyl and pseudoephedrine. Whereas heroin seizures have steadily declined since 2004 highs (644 kg in 2004), ketamine seizures have markedly increased, reflecting an increased popularity of ketamine use among drug users. In addition, 39 drug manufacturing plants were also seized.

From January to September 2010, 26,529 people were convicted of drug-related crimes representing a decrease of over 7 percent compared to the same period last year. Of these convictions, 83 percent (22,006 people) were convicted of using drugs (12 percent decrease from the same period previous year) and 9 percent (2575 people) were convicted solely of manufacturing, selling, and transporting drugs (62 percent increase from the same period previous year).

The PRC, Philippines, Thailand, and Burma remain among the primary sources of drugs smuggled into Taiwan with the PRC representing 70 percent of all drugs seized from January to August. Earlier in the year, authorities seized nearly 850 kg of ketamine in Pingtung County that originated from mainland China. Authorities believe this shipment was destined for local consumption as it coincided with Lunar New Year and schools' winter breaks. In July, the Coast Guard interdicted a fishing vessel attempting to smuggle over 480 kg of ketamine with a street value of 500 million NT ($16.5 million), believed to have originated from China. The same month, police arrested six suspects for allegedly smuggling 10 kg of ketamine stuffed into empty toner cartridge boxes from China. In November, the Coast Guard also seized 60 kg of amphetamine with a street value of 50+ million NT ($1.6 million) at Taipei Port. Disguised as diet pills, 180,000 capsules were shipped from China via cargo ship.

CIB coordinated with U.S. and Thai police in October to break up a heroin smuggling ring in the Golden Triangle area. Arrested in Bangkok, the smugglers planned to transport a portion of the heroin to Taiwan. Thai police seized 14 kg of heroin with a street value of 100 million NT ($3.3 million). In July, Taiwan police arrested two suspects for allegedly smuggling 17 kg of heroin from Thailand valued at over 50 million NT. The ringleader chose persons with clean backgrounds to transport the heroin and admitted to successfully bringing 7 kg into Taiwan in April using the same methodology.

There are also recent instances of Taiwanese nationals engaged in heroin smuggling activities between Taiwan and the Philippines.

The PRC, Philippines, and Malaysia are transit points for methamphetamine and synthetic drugs destined for Taiwan, such as ketamine and MDMA. India remains a source of diverted ketamine smuggled into Taiwan for local consumption.

Smugglers use different methods to bring drugs into Taiwan; however, couriers arriving at Taiwan’s international airports, as well as fishing boats and cargo containers at seaports, remain the primary means of smuggling drugs into Taiwan. Intelligence indicates that the majority of drugs smuggled into Taiwan are for local consumption; the remainder is intended for distribution to international markets. In August, CIB arrested a six-person smuggling ring that successfully used instant noodle and instant coffee packs and various other containers to smuggle drugs to Japan over twenty times. In June, a Korean male was arrested at Taipei International Airport for smuggling one kg of heroin from Thailand to Taiwan, marking the first smuggling case in four years that involved a foreign national. However, in August, MJIB arrested a Singaporean at Taipei International Airport who was working for a transnational drug smuggling organization that employed foreigners to smuggle drugs as he was departing to Manila with nearly 5 kg of amphetamine hidden in chocolate bars, soap, coffee cans, moon cake pastries, and DVD cameras.

In Taiwan, small plots of cultivated cannabis and opium poppies are occasionally found but coca plants are not cultivated. Authorities consider these small cannabis plots insignificant and make no official estimate of plot size. Authorities continue to report methamphetamine laboratory seizures. For example, in early 2010 authorities seized a methamphetamine laboratory in Kaohsiung, Taiwan and approximately 20 kg of pseudoephedrine pills, a methamphetamine precursor, in addition to equipment believed capable of producing approximately 1.5 tons of methamphetamine. Taiwan remains a source of supply for pseudoephedrine combination tablets shipped to various Central American countries. While Taiwan law enforcement is extremely vigilant in its efforts to prevent the export of large quantities of ephedrine/pseudoephedrine to countries that have banned the importation of these substances, chemical companies routinely provide false documentation in an effort to evade law enforcement. Intelligence indicates that Taiwanese chemists on occasion travel to countries such as Cambodia in order to oversee the production of methamphetamine. While some of the final product may be destined for distribution throughout Southeast Asia, there is evidence indicating a certain portion is returned to Taiwan to meet local demand.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

Various agencies are cooperating to enhance Taiwan's demand reduction programs. For example, opiate addiction is viewed by many as a health, rather than legal issue. Under the law, most first-time offenders are sentenced to a treatment facility for a period of time rather than serving a prison sentence. As a result, numerous methadone maintenance treatment programs have been established in an effort to reduce the number of heroin addicts. Taiwan also utilizes long-term rehabilitative centers in hospital and prison settings in treating addicts. Private religious and civic groups also maintain various rehabilitative programs, including residential, counseling, and job placement assistance.

Taiwan's Ministry of Education and the Taiwan National Health Administration continue to forge partnerships with civic and religious groups to raise awareness about the dangers of drug use and educate the public about the availability of treatment programs. Public schools provide anti-drug education, including urine testing of students in junior high school, high school, and college. Radio, television, and film play a supportive role in drug abuse education, and the internet, is also used by Taiwan for raising public awareness. Numerous hotlines exist to report drug abuse or obtain assistance, and school teachers receive some training on how to identify potential student drug abusers.

4. Corruption

There is no indication that Taiwan law enforcement authorities, as a matter of policy, either encourage or facilitate the illicit production or distribution of narcotics, psychotropic drugs, or other controlled substances, nor launder proceeds from illegal drug transactions. No cases of official involvement in illegal drug trafficking or the laundering of proceeds from illicit drug transactions were reported in 2010.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

The U.S. continues to work closely with local authorities to prevent Taiwan from reverting to its earlier status as a major transit/transshipment point for U.S.-bound narcotics. Counternarcotics training and institution building remains a cornerstone for this policy. Taiwan law enforcement enjoys a close relationship with U.S. law enforcement organizations. MJIB, CIB, Customs, and the Coast Guard Administration participate in joint investigations and share intelligence with their U.S. law enforcement counterparts, resulting in several drug seizures and arrests in Taiwan each year.

D. Conclusion

Taiwan law enforcement continues to vigorously enforce drug trafficking laws. These enforcement activities yielded several particularly significant seizures, including the seizure of 847 kilograms of ketamine in January, the largest ketamine seizure in Taiwan's history. In May, officials seized 125 kilograms of ketamine believed destined for local consumption. Taiwan continues to work very closely with the DEA on drug enforcement activities including daily enforcement activities, intelligence sharing, and training opportunities. Such cooperation not only enhances Taiwan's investigative abilities, but also enhances U.S. knowledge of Taiwan-based drug trafficking trends.

The Legislative Yuan (LY) again failed to enact any new counternarcotics legislation. Legislation to permit the use of confidential sources to enable undercover operations was not enacted in 2010; however, efforts continue to encourage the LY to approve this legislation. Additionally, legislation to reclassify ketamine as a Class 2 drug also failed. Currently a Class 3 drug, ketamine trafficking carries lighter sentences and no punishment for abusers whereas reclassification as a Class 2 drug would increase sentences for traffickers as well as establish mandatory rehabilitation or sentencing for abusers. Finally, a change in electronic surveillance laws two years ago that transferred the approving authority for such operations from the Prosecutors Office to the Judiciary, thereby increasing the difficulty of obtaining electronic surveillance warrants, remains a continuing source of frustration for law enforcement.

In July, a U.S. Coast Guard request for permission to stop, board, and search a Taiwan fishing vessel for narcotics was refused by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), due to confusion among the Coast Guard, Fisheries Department, and MOFA on how to handle this request. DEA and the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) will encourage Taiwan Coast Guard to develop written protocols to address future U.S. Coast Guard requests to board and search Taiwan fishing vessels for illicit drugs. In 2011, as in previous years, DEA will continue to urge Taiwan to provide Drug Signature program samples of drugs seized in Taiwan.


Tajikistan

A. Introduction

Tajikistan is not a major narcotics producer, but its border with Afghanistan makes it a favorite transit route for drug traffickers. The drug trade is a serious threat to stability and good governance in Tajikistan, and a terrorist financing concern. While Tajikistan typically interdicts as much Afghan heroin as all other Central Asian countries combined, the 1,344 kilometer border with Afghanistan is sparsely guarded, and the amount of seized narcotics is a small portion of what passes through. Afghanistan produces an estimated 90 percent of the world’s opium and heroin, and an estimated 20 to 30 percent of that is smuggled through Central Asia, with the majority of those opiates passing through Tajikistan.

Poverty and high unemployment contribute to illegal narcotics trafficking. The northern drug route is facilitated by ethnic and linguistic ties between Tajiks in Tajikistan, northern Afghanistan and the migrant community between Tajikistan and Russia. Russian border guards helped secure Tajikistan’s southern border until 2005, when Tajik authorities assumed control.

Domestic drug consumption in Tajikistan is relatively low, with most transited narcotics being consumed in Russia and Eastern Europe. While some sources put the figure higher, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) estimates that about 20,000 people regularly use opiates in the country. The Government of Tajikistan is concerned about the drug use problem. Effective counternarcotics cooperation with Tajikistan is one of the USG’s top strategic goals. Tajikistan is party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

In April of 2010, the Government of Tajikistan adopted a “National Border Management Strategy” drafted with help from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). The strategy outlines comprehensive border management reform plans for 2010 to 2025. The aim of the strategy is to promote cooperation between all government agencies that regulate the flow of people and materials across Tajikistan’s borders. The strategy addresses narcotics and precursor chemical trafficking, customs and border guard reform, corruption, improvements in training, and the use of sniffer dogs to detect narcotics and other contraband. Significant funding for implementation is expected to come from outside donors.

In September of 2010, unrest in the Rasht Valley compelled the Tajik government to divert resources from counter-narcotics activities to fighting a local conflict. The Drug Control Agency (DCA) was ordered to send a significant portion of their armed officers to the region. As a result, some of the USG training programs planned for the DCA had to be put on hold for three months. Further unrest could continue to divert the efforts of government agencies from the fight against narcotics trafficking.

While the USG, the UNODC, and the Border Management Program in Central Asia (BOMCA), have built or refurbished several border posts along Tajikistan’s borders, the Tajik government has not built or refurbished any border posts in recent years. Several Tajik border posts in the eastern autonomous region of Badakhshan have been neglected or abandoned in the past year due to the logistical difficulties of staffing and supplying them.

Tajikistan is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1961 UN Single Convention as amended by the 1972 Protocol, and the 1972 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances. Tajikistan is also a party to the UN Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) and the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (UNTOC).

The OSCE funded training of Afghan law enforcement agencies on anti-trafficking techniques conducted by the Tajikistan Drug Control Agency (DCA) and the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA).There is still an institutional reluctance among agencies within the Tajik government to coordinate their efforts, or to work with other countries. While some U.S. and Tajik initiatives have fostered more coordination between government agencies, the counter-narcotics related institutions still struggle to cooperate consistently.

2. Supply Reduction

In the first eleven months of 2010, law enforcement agencies of the Republic of Tajikistan seized 3313.5 kg of narcotics. Of this total, authorities seized 800.3 kg of heroin, 712.7 kg of opium, and 1,800.5 kg of cannabis. During the comparable period of 2009, law enforcement agencies seized a total of 4337.2 kg of narcotics, thus 2010 seizures represent a significant decrease in drug seizures.

There has been a 23.6 percent overall reduction in drug seizures in 2010. This decrease is partly due to the blight that affected poppy plants in Afghanistan this past growing season; less poppy was produced, thus less opioids moved across borders. The Tajik Customs Service seizes less narcotics than one would expect based on their limited capacity for interdiction. For all agencies, the amount of heroin seized is the key focus, as reducing the flow of heroin through Tajikistan is a top priority for the international community. Tajikistan is not a significant producer or grower of drugs, however, in 2010, the Border Guards destroyed 11,005 plants of wild poppy and the DCA destroyed 312,867 plants.

While heroin and opium remain the primary drugs smuggled through Tajikistan, a few other varieties of dangerous drugs have been found in the last year. The MIA seized ten pills of MDMA-ecstasy, a number of pills of phenobarbitol weighing 8.1 g, and over 286 kg of acetic acid, which can be converted to acetic anhydride. Acetic anhydride is a DEA List II precursor, because it is used in the synthesis of heroin. Tajikistan has not been a common transit route for precursors in the past, but signs point to increased trafficking of acetic anhydride through the country.

In September of 2010, a joint anti-drug operation called Kanal-Yug, or “Channel-South” conducted in Russia, Tajikistan and Kazakhstan led to the arrests of more than 400 individuals charged with drug-related crimes. The operation involved 35,000 police officers from Russia, Tajikistan and Kazakhstan. As a result, more than 50 kilograms of narcotics were seized. Investigative cooperation between Russia and Tajikistan also led to the arrests of 12 individuals wanted by Tajik authorities and 33 people wanted by Russian authorities. In November 2010, a DCA-led effort in coordination with the USG and the Russian anti-narcotics agency concluded with the seizure of 308 kilograms of heroin. Intelligence reports alerted the Tajik Drug Control Agency to a large shipment of Afghan heroin moving by truck from Tursunzoda to Khujand in the north of Tajikistan. The shipment of 3400 large wooden crates was searched by the DCA and the Tajik Customs, resulting in the discovery of 147 crates holding heroin in hollowed out wooden lattices. At this point, 118 kilograms of heroin were seized. Through interrogation of the traffickers, it was discovered that two other shipments were on their way to Chelyabinsk and St. Petersburg, Russia via railcar. After the DCA alerted Russian authorities, their coordinated response led to the seizure of an additional 190 kilograms of heroin.

Drug traffickers employ the full range of smuggling techniques when transporting narcotics through Tajikistan. Transport by rail is a favored method, as existing trade agreements allow sealed cargo containers to pass uninspected from Tajikistan to Russia. Some smugglers are using body concealment to transport drugs out of Tajikistan by air. When smuggling drugs from Afghanistan to Tajikistan the traffickers must pass the Pyanj-Amu Darya River. However, at many times during the year, water flowing in the river is either shallow or frozen and can be forded by traffickers. In areas where it is not easily passable, packages of narcotics are sometimes floated across. Some narcotics are transported in complicity with negligent or corrupt border guards on both sides of the Tajik-Afghan border. This means that official crossways such as bridges are also used for narcotics trafficking. Other concealment methods employed have included hiding drugs in fruits, nuts, candies, coat linings, buttons, shoes, concrete shipments, and hollowed parts of crates. Once drugs enter Tajikistan, there are three primary onward routes that traffickers use: north through Khujand and Uzbekistan, a more eastern route to Osh and Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan, and a third route running directly west from Dushanbe through Uzbekistan.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

The U.S. government has organized and sponsored drug demand reduction projects to assist efforts of the Tajik Government. An USAID HIV/AIDS program focused on injecting drug users provides funds to some drug treatment centers. Tajikistan’s Ministry of Health funds five drug rehabilitation centers throughout the country, with 295 beds and 52 doctors available for patients. These centers are located in Dushanbe, Khujand, Kulob, Khorugh, and Qurghonteppa. The number of registered drug addicts has decreased slightly in the past few years, but these numbers do not necessarily reflect a reduction in drug use. In 2008 there were 8645 registered drug addicts, in 2009 there were 8018, and in 2010 there are 7349. Around 80 percent of drug addicts are addicted to heroin, and addicts are predominantly male.

In 2010, the U.S. Embassy State-INL Office sponsored a Body Building Championship through the Body Building and Fitness Federation of Tajikistan dedicated to drug demand reduction and promoting a healthy lifestyle among young people in Tajikistan. Sixty young people from all regions of Tajikistan competed in the one-day tournament in Dushanbe. Winners of the competition delivered anti-drug messages to high school students. The performance of the winners and their anti-drug dialogue focused attention on the negative aspects of drug use, and the importance of a drug-free lifestyle. Another event that U.S. Embassy INL sponsored in 2010 was the National Judo Championship, and related drug prevention programs. The theme of the competition was “Sports against Narcotics and Drug Trafficking". The three-day event combined world-class judo competition with an anti-drug message to young people who might be at risk for drug influence. Teams from all provinces competed for prizes provided by both the U.S. Embassy and the Judo Federation of Tajikistan. As part of the program, competitors and coaches returned to their home towns and counseled young people from Dushanbe, Khorugh, Qurghonteppa, Kulob and Khujand about the dangers of drugs.

The Tajik government has also implemented its own drug-use prevention programs, most notably, the “Joint Program for Drug Prevention and Interdiction of Illegal Drug Trafficking in the Republic of Tajikistan”. With the goal of promoting healthy lifestyles, the government has organized a series of over 600 performances and public awareness programs on television, radio, and newspapers. The program has also conducted nearly 200 meetings, conversations, seminars, and round tables, along with sporting and cultural events among students, teachers, and women. Similarly, the Drug Control Agency has presented a total of 283 anti-drug presentations in the mass media. With the financial support of the OSCE, government ministries have also printed 1500 copies of the textbook "Prevention of Drug Use: General Recommendations".

4. Corruption

While there is surely lax enforcement of anti-corruption laws in Tajikistan and throughout the region, there are significant legal provisions against corruption in Tajik law. The Law on the Fight against Corruption sets out basic principles of anti-corruption and also states which legal bodies have jurisdiction over offenses. The Prosecutor General’s Office (PGO) has the leading role. The PGO requires financial disclosure that seeks to prevent conflicts of interest by public officials. The Agency on State Financial Control and Fight against Corruption implements financial control and anti-corruption measures. The agency director is appointed by the President, and reports directly to him. In 2010, this agency was split into two separate agencies, one agency has jurisdiction over corruption, while the other handles financial auditing for the whole government. Despite these laws, corruption is one of the major problems facing good governance and effective counter-narcotics measures in Tajikistan. Partly due to the low salaries of civil servants, including law enforcement officers, many government workers try to supplement their income by charging for services that are meant to be free, or by demanding money to overlook real or supposed violations of law. As a matter policy, the government of Tajikistan does not encourage or facilitate illicit production or distribution of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, nor does it encourage or facilitate the laundering of proceeds from illegal drug transactions.

During the first nine months of 2010, a total of 43 corruption crimes were registered. Additionally, 25 crimes were registered in the office of the Prosecutor General itself, while 23 crimes by 21 employees were noted in the Ministry of Defense, and additional offenders were charged at Customs, the Tax Service, and also in the courts. In April 2010, Saymuddin Mirzoev, the deputy head of the Tajik Border Guards, was charged with taking a bribe of $15,000 in exchange for releasing a drug trafficking suspect. It was also alleged that on another occasion Mr. Mirzoev had received a bribe of $30,000 for the same type of crime. The investigation is still underway. Occasionally, high ranking officials like Mirzoev are arrested for involvement in corruption related to the narcotics trade. Anecdotal evidence suggests that some officials who are engaged in such activity go unpunished.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

The U.S. Government continues to cooperate very closely with the Government of the Republic of Tajikistan in the spheres of law enforcement, security, and rule of law. In the most recent Letter of Agreement with Tajikistan, the U.S. Government pledged $7 million in additional assistance. These funds will be used to counter and interdict the flow of narcotics into Tajikistan, improve Tajikistan’s border controls, assist policing reforms, and improve Tajikistan’s justice system. This will be done by assisting the Border Guards, the State Committee on National Security, the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Drug Control Agency, the Ministry of Justice, the Prosecutor General’s Office, and several other agencies. Funds will improve infrastructure and build capacity for law enforcement agencies. Training will include techniques for combating terrorism, crime, trafficking in persons and narcotics, and also develop English language curricula teaching methodology. The funds will also pay for advanced forensics equipment and training.

In April 2010, Tajikistan enacted a new Criminal Procedural Code (CPC). The INL Rule of Law program provides technical expertise in implementation of the new CPC according to international standards, and is training members of the legal community on the new law. The U.S. Government will support the implementation of the Criminal Procedure Code by raising public awareness of criminal procedures, including appropriate application of international criminal procedure standards among judges, prosecutors, law enforcement officials, students and others in the Tajik legal community. The U.S. Embassy INL Section also provides assistance to Tajik law enforcement, security and border agencies. Assistance includes reconstruction of border outposts, rehabilitation of training academies of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Border Guards, improvements at training centers for police and judges, and actual training sessions for law enforcement officers in and out of the country.

U.S. Embassy INL continues to work with the Drug Control Agency to assist its staff to better fight against drug flow by increasing interdictions and seizures. To this aim, INL, DEA and the DCA opened the Drug Liaison Office (DLO) in Taloqan, Afghanistan to enhance cross-border cooperation between Tajikistan and Afghanistan. Several months later this office showed good results. Drug Liaison Officers assisted the Aghans in seizing 55 kilograms of heroin and 715 kilograms of opium. They assisted in arresting two individuals during the operation. In addition, officers conducted two jointly coordinated operations which led to about 100 kilograms of heroin being seized by Afghan authorities. This year, INL completed reconstruction work at the Border Guard Academy, which included the construction of a new dining facility, gym, heating system, toilets, landscaping, garages and a new ID checkpoint complete with furnishings and equipment. INL also reconstructed the Khirmanjo Border Observation Post, renovating the building with furniture, equipment, and a new well for clean water. This is the first border outpost in Tajikistan to use solar panels, which are used for hot water and for back-up lighting. INL also reconstructed the Police Academy Building #3. The renovations included new classrooms, common rooms, a kitchen, showers, and new toilets. The classrooms were equipped with new furniture designed for law enforcement education. This will provide better living and working conditions for the law enforcement officers based there.

D. Conclusion

The United States has recently hosted an evaluation team from the United States Border Patrol (USBP) that that will prepare a report recommending improvements in the training capacity of the Border Guards. In addition to our on-going bilateral cooperation, the USG will encourage the Government of Tajikistan and other regional powers to continue to engage in cooperation on investigating transnational narcotics related crime, specifically through the support of the Central Asian Regional Information and Coordination Center (CARICC). The United States will continue working with the Government of the Republic of Tajikistan to develop its rule of law, security, law enforcement, and counternarcotics capabilities through the improvement of curriculum at the training academies and provide training courses in criminal investigation, tactical capabilities, community policing, and language skills. The USG intends to assist in creating a permanently staffed narcotics investigative training facility within the Drug Control Agency. Through these joint efforts will contribute to improvements in Tajikistan’s effectiveness in interdicting narcotics, prosecuting traffickers, and delivering justice.


Tanzania

A. Introduction

Tanzania is located along drug trafficking routes linking Latin America, the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe, and, to a lesser extent, the United States. Tanzania’s porous borders offer numerous possible points of entry for drug trafficking through its eight land borders with surrounding countries and 1,424-kilometer coastline. Drugs are believed to enter Tanzania by air, sea, roads and rail. Major points of entry include airports in Dar es Salaam, Zanzibar and Kilimanjaro, seaports at Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar, and smaller ocean and lake ports like Tanga, Mtwara, Mwanza, and Bagamoyo. Traffickers also reportedly conduct a significant amount of narcotics smuggling offshore via dhows and small boats that avoid supervised ports. Attracted by the promise of quick cash, some Tanzanians serve as "drug mules," i.e., small-scale couriers moving narcotics through the country and elsewhere around the world. During the year, Tanzanians were arrested for drug trafficking in East Africa, Europe, and South America. In Spain, police arrested 48 members of an international drug trafficking ring, many of whom were reported to be Tanzanian. Drugs like cocaine, heroin, khat, Mandrax, and opium pass through Tanzania. In addition, the domestic production of cannabis is a significant problem, with active cultivation in many regions.

Domestic use of narcotics appears to be on the rise, although cannabis use appears to have stabilized. Because cocaine and heroin are not as affordable as cannabis or khat, they are used in smaller quantities and primarily within affluent urban areas. However, the growth of the tourism industry, particularly on Zanzibar and near Arusha, as well as increasing affluence, have increased demand for these more expensive narcotics. While the Government of Tanzania is working to build the capacity of its law enforcement and health institutions to combat drug trafficking and abuse, they are constrained by the lack of financial as well as human capital. Within the law enforcement sector and judiciary, corruption continues to erode the efficacy of existing anti-narcotics efforts. Tanzania is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

Efforts to amend the Anti-Drugs Control Commission Act of 1995, designed to strengthen the Drug Control Commission (DCC) and increase the penalty for drug trafficking, failed in 2007. However, the DCC continues to push for harsher penalties, including mandatory jail time. During the year, three persons were convicted and sentenced to life in prison for drug trafficking in an Mtwara court. Such tough sentences, however, are the exception rather than the rule. Magistrates typically impose fines on offenders as opposed to seeking prison sentences. The law stipulates that convicted drug traffickers be fined three times the market value of the drugs with which they are caught, but not less than Tsh 10 million (approximately $6700). The DCC is encouraging the government to amend the Anti-Drugs Act to ensure imprisonment for drug offenders is the primary punishment. In 2009, the government drafted a national drug control policy. This policy was reviewed by the relevant ministries as well as the technical committee of the Cabinet Secretariat in 2010 and is expected to be approved by Parliament in 2011.

The anti-narcotics task force, formed in 2008 by the DCC, includes representatives from the DCC, Police, Customs, Immigration, the Revenue Authority, the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB), and the President's Office. Meeting on a weekly basis, this body facilitates interagency collaboration on narcotics issues, operating at the national, regional, and district levels to maximize the benefits of collaboration between law enforcement organs. Task force activities are funded out of the DCC's budget, which was approximately Tsh 900 million ($600,000) in 2010. During the year, the task force conducted several joint operations aimed at reducing domestic production of cannabis along the border with Kenya.

Law enforcement officials in the anti-narcotics unit (ANU) have successfully built international relationships that allow for information sharing regarding the movement of narcotics from one continent to another. Formal cooperation between counternarcotics police among East African Community (EAC) countries (Kenya, Uganda, Burundi, Rwanda and Tanzania) is well established. This cooperation has resulted in significant increases in effectiveness in each nation's narcotics control efforts. Tanzania also cooperates formally with countries from the Southern African Development Community, including Zambia and South Africa.

The Illicit Drugs Bill was passed by the Zanzibar House of Representatives in 2009 and signed into law in April 2010. This law enhances the powers of police officers to search and seize narcotics, while also allowing for "controlled delivery" of suspected narcotics shipments to persons suspected of transporting illegal narcotics. In addition, the law provides for the formation of a narcotics secretariat and an anti-drug commission to coordinate counter-narcotics efforts. According to the law, drug users are subject to jail terms of six months and entry into mandatory rehabilitation programs.

Tanzania is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1961 Single Convention as amended by the 1972 Protocol, and the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances. Tanzania is also a party to the UN Convention against Corruption, and the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its three protocols. The 1931 U.S.-U.K. Extradition Treaty is applicable to Tanzania. Tanzania has ratified the EAC Protocol on combating drugs in the region.

2. Supply Reduction

Due to its geographic location, porous borders, and weakly controlled seaports and airports, Tanzania has become a transit country for narcotics moving in sub-Saharan Africa. Traffickers from landlocked countries of Southern Africa, including Zambia and Malawi, and island nations, like Comoros, use Tanzania for transit. Control at the ports, especially on Zanzibar, is difficult. Internal waterways, such as Lake Victoria, also provide convenient transit routes for drug smugglers. Traffickers often cross the border at points without established posts. The volume of cargo moving through Tanzanian ports poses challenges to effective monitoring. Although the government employs scanners and dogs to assist in the detection of illicit drugs, its resources and the training of its personnel are insufficient to adequately monitor the transshipment of narcotics. For example, drug sniffing dogs are only used at the port of Dar es Salaam. Moreover, ANU in the mainland police force only has 250 officers nationwide with approximately 42 serving in Dar es Salaam.

Traffickers using forged documents and various other methods to conceal their illicit activities face poor controls and untrained and sometimes corrupt officials. Meanwhile, their smuggling techniques are becoming more sophisticated. Fraudulent documents are more widely available and are of increasingly high quality. Efforts to conceal travel to drug producing countries are more elaborate, involving multiple cross-continental trips and several different drug "mules" in some cases. In an effort to elude drug sniffing dogs, drugs are often concealed with local goods such as tea and coffee or swallowed by drug traffickers.

According to the ANU, heroin entering Tanzania from Afghanistan, Iran, and Pakistan via Dubai and other locations, often by boat, is being smuggled to China and Europe in small quantities. Cocaine enters Tanzania from Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Trinidad and Tobago, Venezuela, and Curacao in transit to South Africa, Europe, Australia and North America. The port of Dar es Salaam is also a point of entry for Mandrax (Methaqualone) from India, Nepal and Kenya headed toward South Africa. Tanzanians continue to be recruited as “drug mules” for trafficking and have been implicated by Spanish police in an international drug trafficking ring.

Traditional cultivation of cannabis takes place in remote parts of the country, mainly for domestic use. Although cannabis is produced in almost all regions, DCC and ANU officials identified the following regions as the primary production areas for cannabis: Morogoro, Iringa, Tabora, Mara, Arusha, Rukwa, Ruvuma, and Tanga. In recent years, production spread to Lindi and Mtwara due to increased demand from Mozambique. In total, police destroyed 296 acres of cannabis during the year. No figures on total production exist. The DCC's plans to conduct research to determine the extent of cultivation were halted due to financial constraints. Khat is also grown locally, primarily in Arusha and Tanga. An estimated 3,700 kilograms were seized during the year.

During the year, the ANU caught a number of individuals using diplomatic pouches to smuggle drugs into and out of the country. In March, law enforcement officials arrested traffickers from Liberia and Guinea with forged diplomatic passports, claiming to be diplomats. They had 33 kilograms of cocaine concealed in fraudulent diplomatic pouches. In April, there was a similar incident involving Ugandans posing as government employees. In addition, in March, Tanzania recorded one of its largest drug seizures. Six individuals, including one Iranian national, were arrested in the port city of Tanga with 95 kilograms of heroin valued at $18.6 million. Between January and September 2010, mainland police arrested approximately 57 individuals for drug possession, of which 9 involved possession of heroin, 7 possession of cocaine, 26 possession of khat, and 15 possession of cannabis. In contrast to previous years, there were no arrests related to the possession of Mandrax or morphine. To date in 2010, police seized over 7,800 kilograms of drugs, including 96 kilograms of heroin, 46 kilograms of cocaine, and 4,035 kilograms of cannabis.

On October 28, the Zanzibar police arrested Miseji Hamisi Kondo at the airport with 770 grams of heroin. The case is pending. On July 2, a Zanzibar court sentenced one person to twenty years in prison for trafficking heroin. One hundred twenty seven individuals were arrested in Zanzibar for using illicit drugs during the year, but there were no convictions for personal use offenses.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

Cannabis is the most commonly used drug in Tanzania. Although its use has not declined, it has at least begun to stabilize. Local use of Mandrax is limited. Since the introduction of powdered heroin in 2000, however, use of this drug has increased. Intravenous drug use is more common in Zanzibar than on the mainland. With direct flights connecting South America and Africa, cocaine use has also increased in recent years, particularly among local youth and tourists. However, prices for cocaine and heroin are lower on the streets of Tanzania than elsewhere (viz. South Africa) and thus the market is not of substantial interest to traffickers.

Through its community outreach activities, the police have worked to educate the public about the dangers of narcotics. Their activities focus on building the confidence of Tanzanians in the police's efforts to combat drug trafficking. In 2010, DCC continued its drug awareness campaign, participating in state sponsored trade fairs, national celebrations, and youth-centered events to create greater awareness about drug trafficking. In Zanzibar, narcotics officials worked with the Department of Substance Abuse Prevention and Rehabilitation of the Zanzibar Ministry of Health, conducting seminars for local leaders and the public to promote awareness and encourage citizens to support the police's efforts to catch drug traffickers.

The DCC, under the Prime Minister's Office, oversees treatment and prevention activities, coordinating with NGOs and other medical facilities. It managed a small demand reduction program, which included training courses for nurses, counselors, and teachers in regional medical facilities across the country. Limited government resources exist for specialized care for drug addiction and rehabilitation. Most treatment was provided at the local level by NGOs or at community health facilities. However, these organizations lack trained personnel to identify, assess, and assist drug addicts, particularly those in need of psycho-social interventions. Because resources are stretched so thin, quality of care is an issue and relapse is common among drug users.

Tanzania adopted the UNODC guidelines on treatment and disseminated them to service providers during the year. Financial constraints, however, prevented widespread distribution of these resources throughout the country. The DCC also provided the UNODC training guidelines to 11 Ministry of Health trainers on the mainland and Zanzibar. During the year, DCC's Technical Working Group collaborated with Muhimbili Hospital and the Ministry of Health on the development of six manuals for service provision, including a guide for the management of drugs at primary health care centers, an outreach service guide, and a strategic framework for the prevention of HIV among IV drug users. The DCC received a grant from the UNODC and WHO to support training activities in Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar. Training will commence in early 2011. The DCC is also planning to use mobile counseling units in the Dar es Salaam area. At present, any required in-patient care is typically provided by psychiatric hospitals. Drug addicts were often hesitant to seek in-patient treatment due to the stigma associated with psychiatric facilities. There were estimated to be only six psychiatric units in the country, 20 trained psychiatrists, and fewer than five psychologists.

4. Corruption

The Government of Tanzania does not, as a matter of government policy, encourage or facilitate illicit drug production or distribution, nor is it involved in laundering the proceeds of the sale of illicit drugs; however, corruption continued to be a serious concern within the Tanzanian police force. It is widely believed that corrupt police officials facilitate the transshipment of narcotics through Tanzania. There is no specific provision of the anticorruption laws regarding narcotics-related corruption cases.

Many believe that corruption in the courts often leads to case dismissals or light sentencing of convicted narcotics offenders. There have been reports that suspects plead “not guilty” delaying proceedings until the magistrate hearing the case can be bribed. Once confident of the magistrate's complicity, the suspects change their plea to guilty, thereby forgoing a lengthy trial process, and the magistrate issues a judgment of only a minor fine.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

U.S. policy initiatives and programs for addressing narcotics problems in Tanzania focused on training workshops and seminars for law enforcement officials. During the year, Tanzanian officers participated in a USG sponsored workshops at the International Law Enforcement Academy (ILEA) in Gaborone, Botswana; in the United States; and elsewhere in the world.

The DCC collaborates closely with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, which helped it to develop treatment and rehabilitation protocols for blood-transmitted diseases like HIV/AIDS associated with intravenous drug abuse.

D. Conclusion

Despite its limited resources and geographic challenges, Tanzania continued to make progress in its fight against drug trafficking. The ANU and the Zanzibar police successfully intercepted sizeable shipments entering the country and worked effectively with domestic and international counterparts to track the movement of illicit narcotics. The DCC continued its efforts to increase awareness, improve treatment options, and build the capacity of organizations to provide counseling. However, Tanzania's counternarcotics efforts continue to be hampered by corruption both within the police and judiciary. Moreover, the government has been slow to respond to the DCC's request to amend the penalties for traffickers to mandate jail time. U.S.-Tanzanian cooperation will continue, with a focus on improving Tanzania's capacity to enforce its counternarcotics laws.


Thailand

A. Introduction

Small amounts of organic drugs such as opium, heroin, or cannabis, as well as synthetic drugs such as methamphetamine are produced in Thailand, but cultivation and/or production remain minimal. Each year since 1999 the United Nations opium survey has found that harvestable opium poppy cultivation in Thailand has been less than 1,000 hectares (about 2,500 acres), the U.S. statutory definition of a Major Source Country. The planting that occurs is by ethnic highland tribal peoples trying to supplement their incomes by selling locally or for their own consumption. Small quantities of cannabis are cultivated in north-eastern and southern Thailand, likewise for local consumption.

Thailand’s long and porous borders are vulnerable to transnational crime, especially narcotics trafficking. Thailand remains a transshipment country as well as a target market for drugs produced in neighboring countries. Drug smugglers have adapted their routing and shipment methods in response to successful suppression efforts in the northern border areas. Heroin and especially methamphetamine continue to move from Burma directly across Thailand’s remote northern border for Thai domestic consumption as well as for onward export to regional and wider international markets. Additionally, traffickers move methamphetamine and heroin from Burma into Thailand through Laos and Cambodia. Some opium and large quantities of marijuana are moved into and through Thailand from Laos, while smaller quantities of marijuana are smuggled from Cambodia. Marijuana smuggled into southern Thailand in bulk is frequently transported on to Malaysia and other regional markets.

Regional reductions in opiate production have been counter-balanced by much higher production levels of Amphetamine Type Stimulant (ATS) tablets, as well as crystal methamphetamine. Burma-based drug trafficking organizations produce hundreds of millions of tablets of methamphetamine (“yaa-baa”) each year for regional export. A substantial portion of the yaa-baa produced in Burma ends up being trafficked into and through Thailand, where it remains the number one drug of abuse. Some drugs which transit Thailand reach the United States, where each year there are seizures of small quantities of opium and methamphetamine that evidently have moved through Thailand, typically mailed by relatives to individuals of Asian ethnicity in the U.S.

Crystal Methamphetamine “Ice” is brought to Thailand from Burma for domestic consumption as well as for onward regional export to Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Japan. In the past year, numerous Iranian nationals have been arrested while attempting to smuggle “Ice” through Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi International Airport. Iranian smugglers have also been arrested in neighboring Southeast Asian countries, where they capitalize on the growing methamphetamine consumer market. Much of the “Ice” smuggled into Thailand by Iranians is trans-shipped to other countries in the region.

Thailand has a small domestic consumer market for ecstasy and cocaine coming from a variety of sources and transit countries including Cambodia, Malaysia, Burma, Europe, and Canada. Ecstasy typically is smuggled into Thailand via commercial air carriers from Europe. The cocaine market in Thailand, like that for ecstasy, is primarily restricted to some affluent Thai and foreigners in large cities. While the cocaine market is still largely controlled by West African criminal organizations, South Americans have also become involved in Thailand. They are more aggressively involved elsewhere in the region, and represent a new trend in international organized criminal activity.

Marijuana is used widely in Thailand, with a steady flow entering from Laos. Some marijuana is still grown in several Thai provinces, where it is used for flavoring in food. Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa), a local drug with modest psychotropic properties, is grown in several provinces and is offered for sale in some of Thailand’s southern provinces. Ketamine is used in Thailand and throughout Asia in both liquid and powder form. Most Ketamine used in Thailand is produced in India. Thailand-based enterprises continue to market steroids for worldwide sale, including in the U.S. and Europe. Thai-based organizations that produce steroids have been a growing target for law enforcement, with arrests made in Thailand contributing to the dismantling of steroid trafficking organizations around the world.

A new drug threat emerging from China and South Asia affects Thailand and the region at large: fake pharmaceuticals with little or no medicinal properties, yet expensively and persuasively packaged, purportedly for the relief of life-threatening conditions such as tuberculosis, malaria, and HIV/AIDS. As this began as an intellectual property issue, Immigration and Customs Enforcement has taken steps to address it in Thailand during 2010.

Although marijuana use is widespread in Thailand, methamphetamine is the number one drug threat in Thai society. Crystal methamphetamine or “Ice” production in the Shan State of Burma, although not yet widely available in the drug market, is becoming a serious concern to Thai authorities due to its highly addictive properties. It is generally smoked and costs 3,000 baht ($88) per gram on the street. The small quantities of opium produced in Thailand are insufficient even for the demand within the dwindling population of opium smokers in northern Thailand, who must rely on imports from neighboring countries.

In southern Thailand, chewing of Kratom or mixing it in drinks is accepted in many communities. Kratom is popular due to its low cost, difficulty of detection, and broad acceptance by local village society. The Indian Ketamine used in Thailand has hallucinogenic effects and is cheaper and considered less dangerous than ecstasy. There is also significant abuse of inhalants in Thailand, such as glue, among street children and other poor people. Such inhalants are not usually controlled or treated as illicit substances. Thailand is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

The uncertain political situation in Thailand has had some negative effect upon efforts to combat drugs as some enforcement units have been reassigned away from counter-narcotics investigations to focus on anti-government activities

RTG efforts to interdict illicit drugs during 2009-10 have included: a) stronger border control; b) using units of the police and army, as well as some civil service personnel, for patrolling; c) check points to monitor high traffic areas; d) strengthening the anti-drug educational capacities of local communities and schools through anti-drug programs for youth; e) border Liaison Offices and joint training initiatives with Laos and Cambodia; f) using the new law on asset forfeiture and anti-money laundering against illicit drug traffickers; g) enhancing international assistance and operational cooperation; h) surveying and manual eradication of poppy cultivation areas; i) education and alternative livelihood support for northern hill-tribe villagers; and j) better statistical research and measurement of drug users, traffickers, and released prisoners. The Thai Office of Narcotics Control Board (ONCB) conducts year-round surveillance in upland areas of northern Thailand, where renewed opium poppy planting could recur. The ONCB Office coordinates at least one opium eradication campaign per year, carried out by Thai 3rd Army units, specialists in this activity. These campaigns are conducted with financial support from the U.S. Mission, and are assisted in planning by information developed by DEA’s Bangkok Country Office.

Thailand’s counter-drug air assets are insufficient to regularly patrol the country’s long and mostly remote land borders with Laos, Burma, and Cambodia. In recent years the Thai have stepped up efforts to coordinate with law enforcement entities in neighboring countries, even in times of border tension. Recent Thai efforts in border interdiction and law enforcement coordination include continued intense policing of the northern and northeast border areas. Improved cross-border operational communications along the Mekong River have been fostered by joint Lao-Thai river patrols, using U.S. Government-purchased small boats and other equipment. Lao and Thai border law enforcement authorities have more frequent contacts and meetings, as well as better communications tools, supporting operational cross-border communications. While still far from optimal, this enhanced level of coordination is much better than the Mekong border situation fifteen years ago, when Thai and Lao law enforcement units were likely to fire upon each other. USG support has prompted joint marine police training in counter smuggling techniques among the four neighboring countries facing the Gulf of Thailand.

Thai law enforcement authorities employ extensive field training and modern equipment to respond to the border trafficking threat. A wide range of counternarcotics tools, including confidential sources, undercover operations and controlled deliveries are commonly used in drug suppression and interdiction. A USG-funded drug intelligence center in northeastern Thailand, constructed with the help of the Joint Interagency Task Force, JIATF-West, further bolsters counter-narcotics coordinating and operational capabilities within the Royal Thai Police Narcotics Suppression Bureau (RTP/NSB) network.

Thailand is party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1961 Single Convention as amended by its 1972 Protocol, and the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances. It has signed, but not ratified, the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and the UN Convention against Corruption. Thailand is an active participant in the Colombo Plan and a participant in the ASEAN and China Cooperative Operations in Response to Dangerous Drugs (ACCORD) Organization. Thailand signed the ASEAN Treaty on Mutual Legal Assistance. The United States and Thailand have extradition and mutual legal assistance treaties in force and the Thai have been among the most cooperative USG partners in this area.

2. Supply Reduction

Thai law enforcement arrests, and the Office of the Attorney General prosecutes narcotics offenders very frequently, and such cases are given wide publicity. Scarcely a day passes without some media report of drug arrests. Seizures of “ice” by Thai law enforcement agencies declined steadily between 2005 when 322 kilograms were seized and 2008 when just 48 kilograms were seized. This trend has reversed in 2009 and continued to increase throughout 2010. On the whole, counter-narcotics law enforcement is the best-developed part of the Thai criminal justice system - a result of long cooperation with DEA.

During FY 2010 there was a 13 percent increase in narcotics arrests over the previous year. Poppy production has been so effectively suppressed that there were only three crop eradication events for opium during the fiscal year.

Statistical Tables:

Drug Seizures and Arrests

All Figures in kg, Except Meth Pills-“Yaa-Baa” in Millions of Pills

YEAR

METH

CRYSTAL

KETAMINE

OPIUM

HEROIN

ECSTASY

COCAINE

2008

22.1 MIL

52.9

18.1

5708.5

199.8

11.28

11.5

2009

26.9 MIL

210.6

20

40,847

143

14.8

9.2

2010

32.1 MIL

331.5

164.6

8743.4

46.9

2.6

24.3

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

Thailand carries out comprehensive demand reduction programs, by combining educational programs to discourage drug abuse with treatment for current addicts. During the past four years, the Thai government has taken steps to substitute treatment programs for prison terms in cases where the user was apprehended in possession of quantities of drugs clearly intended only for personal use. A highly visible and effective drug awareness and demand reduction program known as “To Be Number One” continues under the patronage and active involvement of a senior member of the Royal Family. This and other drug education and awareness campaigns are conducted in cooperation with private organizations, NGOs, and public institutions, using radio, TV, and printed media. The Thai Government invests substantially in building awareness of the perils of drug addiction in the schools, currently running seven such programs at various grade levels.

During 2008-09, the Thai Government ran a special demand reduction operation entitled “unity for freedom from the threat of drugs,” focusing on education of high-risk youth groups. Government officials, civic groups and local administrations and interested private citizens were deployed to monitor the drug problem. Special emphasis was given to three critical areas (Bangkok, the South, and the far North), using the methodologies offered by D.A.R.E. as well as best practices from other parts of the international drug rehabilitation community. These programs directly assisted about 300,000 persons during FY 2010, and their messages reached most of the school-age youth in the country.

The effectiveness of public education programs is difficult to gauge, but overall the Methamphetamine problem is growing rather than shrinking. Treatment data reported by both the Thai government and United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC) indicate that “yaa baa” use remains widespread. Heroin and opium usage remained relatively low and stable during 2010. Crystal methamphetamine, “Ice” usage increased in 2010, although usage remained comparatively limited, due to the much higher cost of this drug. There are some positive points to note. Consumption rates and trafficking volumes of “yaa baa” are still below those that pertained before the controversial war on drugs of 2003, with prices today about three times higher than what they were prior to that campaign. High street prices reflect effective interdiction, but say little about the effectiveness of public education or rehabilitation. However, Thailand’s rate of drug recidivism, reflected in imprecise, but generally indicative statistics, is quite low, which does point to effective drug rehabilitation programs.

4. Corruption

Corruption is endemic in Thai society, though in recent years it has graduated from the status of a taboo topic to being openly chronicled in press reports of high-profile court cases. Public corruption is very costly to the Thai public purse; both in procurement, misappropriations, and embezzlement. Bribery of officials is widespread. Thailand has a Counter Corruption Commission, and officials are prosecuted for corrupt practices. High-profile corruption cases are always highly politicized. Police corruption is a major factor in the generally low public opinion of law enforcement, and the willingness of the Thai police to police themselves is low.

As a matter of policy, the Thai Government does not permit, encourage, or facilitate illicit production or distribution of narcotic or psychotropic drugs or other controlled substances, or the laundering of drug proceeds, either by individuals or government agencies. No current senior official of the Thai government is known to have engaged in, encouraged, or facilitated the illicit production or distribution of narcotic or psychotropic drugs or other controlled substances, or to have been involved in the laundering of proceeds from drug transactions. Reports of official corruption are rarely drug-related, but drug-related corruption at working levels is very likely, given the volume and value of drugs consumed in and moving through Thailand. While on the whole narcotics enforcement is one of the bright spots in Thailand’s law enforcement record, corruption undoubtedly has a negative impact upon the effectiveness of counter-narcotics operations.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

Thailand, the U.S. Government’s only ally on the mainland of Southeast Asia, has entered an era of political crisis and the performance of the criminal justice system is an important factor in securing the strong support of the public for maintaining rule of law. The USG is uniquely well-situated to help with this effort.

Thailand and the United States maintain a strong long-standing partnership to combat drug trafficking and international crime, and American law enforcement is accorded high levels of willing cooperation by their Thai counterparts. Thai-U.S. bilateral cooperation makes possible a broad range of investigations conducted jointly by Thai law enforcement agencies and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), as well as other U.S. law enforcement agencies. The American Mission pursues law enforcement and criminal justice capacity-building as a matter of policy, both to aid an allied nation at a difficult time and to sustain relationships that directly benefit American law enforcement working in the region. These programs build capacity in anti-narcotics work, as well as in many other law enforcement areas, and foster cooperation with other countries in the region on a range of narcotics control and anti-transnational crime activities.

The United States continues to provide its capacity-building and operational support to Thailand under annual Letters of Agreement (LOA). Most visible among these activities is the continued operation of the jointly funded and managed Thai-U.S. International Law Enforcement Training Academy (ILEA) in Bangkok, which provides law enforcement operational and management skills training to government officials and police officers from 12 regional countries, plus Hong Kong. In addition to a full schedule of 2009-10 training programs for regional officials, ILEA also conducted a number of bilateral skills-building courses and seminars to benefit Thai law enforcement and government agencies. These programs included training by federal, state, and local U.S. law enforcement professionals, purchases of non-lethal equipment and other commodities, and targeted third-party funded training. All this is aimed at enhancing Thailand’s and the region’s capacity to combat the illicit drug trade and transnational and organized crime.

DEA’s relationship with the Thai police has been exemplary regarding how to build and sustain a long-term and complex working law enforcement relationship. Thailand is one of eleven countries worldwide in which the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has established Sensitive Investigative Units (SIU). Thai SIU participants receive specialized training and undergo a rigorous vetting process. This assures a cadre of competent counterparts with whom DEA works closely to target drug trafficking organizations. Four SIU teams currently operate in Thailand, focused on the most important trafficking groups in the region. In addition to these law enforcement assistance programs, the important American law enforcement presence in the Bangkok Mission produces a stream of training and other assistance to the Thai police. For example, the Regional Security Office deploys NADR funding to administer an anti-terrorism capacity-building assistance (ATA) program, with classes in a range of security and counter-terror-related topics for Thai law enforcement.

The U.S. Embassy’s Transnational Crimes Affairs Section (TCAS, formerly the Narcotics Affairs Section) began a new law enforcement capacity building program in September 2008, paired with a parallel program to assist the prosecutors and the judiciary through sustained consultations with senior American counterparts. The Thai police have given considerable access to police training programs and curricula in the Thai police academy system. In addition to tactical training, TCAS assists the Royal Thai Police to improve professional standards, community policing and police ethics — matters of urgency given the unsettled political situation. These programs aim to improve Thai law enforcement competence, to instill broader respect for human rights in the law enforcement culture of the country, and to bolster the criminal justice system overall.

A U.S. Department of Justice Resident Legal Advisor (RLA), based in TCAS, works to achieve complimentary changes in prosecutorial and judicial law, practices and procedures. In addition, the U.S. Department of Justice Attaché works closely with Thai authorities to facilitate extraditions and mutual legal assistance in narcotics and transnational crime matters. These two persons are both experienced U.S. federal prosecutors who make themselves available to assist Thai prosecutors and judges. The Thai frequently avail themselves of this help.

D. Conclusion

The USG enjoys a particularly close and collaborative relationship with Thai law enforcement, and should continue to support the Thai Government’s efforts to interdict illicit drugs moving through Thailand and on to the United States, as well as collaborating on a broad range of international crime control issues via material, legal, and technical support. Wherever possible, programs should also seek to bolster Thailand’s position in the region and enhance coordinated law enforcement across borders. The USG has encouraged the promulgation of laws and regulations more closely aligned with international standards, and helped Thailand develop more consistent adherence to principles of rule of law, a critically important concept to foster in an allied nation undergoing political transformation. All such activities contribute to the fight against illicit drug trafficking and other transnational crime.

The U.S. can sustain the opium suppression success of the past 20 years by contributing to continued manual opium eradication programs as these occur. The U.S. can respond to high-level Thai Government interest in justice sector reform by using seconded U.S. Department of Justice personnel, American state and municipal law enforcement, as well as private sector organizations such as the American Bar Association to help achieve this goal. The Thai-U.S-sponsored ILEA has just completed a decade of regional relationship-building, relationships crucial to the fight against crime across the porous borders of Southeast Asia. ILEA Bangkok’s comprehensive program of regional law enforcement training and cooperation builds technical skills and fosters regional cooperation in law enforcement. As nearly all serious crime in the region now has a transnational dimension, the ILEA model has proven itself and this model will be emulated for as much law enforcement capacity building as is practicable.


Timor-Leste

As one of the poorest countries in Asia, Timor-Leste appears to be a relatively inconsequential side market for narcotics trafficking from neighboring Indonesia. According to the National Police of Timor-Leste (PNTL), there are four types of narcotics available in the capital city of Dili: methamphetamine, MDMA (ecstasy), marijuana and heroin. PNTL have seized small quantities of all of these narcotics in recent years. The average price of methamphetamine is $300 per gram for high quality and between $100-$200 for lesser quality meth. One MDMA tablet sells for $100. One marijuana cigarette costs $10. Heroin costs in excess of $300 per gram. Narcotics are smuggled over the land border at Batugade, through Dili Airport, and by small maritime vessels. Narcotics are sold in bars, karaoke lounges, massage parlors, and hotels. Narcotics are concealed in cosmetics and grocery items and in automobile and motorcycle parts as they are smuggled into Timor. The potential domestic market is limited by the low income level of the general population, but in the medium term, moderate oil and gas revenues and steady economic growth have the potential to stimulate economic development and raise income levels, thereby expanding the potential drug market, if appropriate law enforcement measures are not taken to curb narcotics trafficking.

According to available information, there is little, if any, organic narcotics production in Timor-Leste. There are unconfirmed reports, however, that there may be one or two small-scale methamphetamine production facilities in and around Dili. Methamphetamine precursor chemicals pseudoephedrine and ephedrine are readily available in numerous Dili pharmacies and there is no limit on quantity purchased per customer per day, nor is customer information registered at the time of purchase. A shortage of law enforcement capacity, including training, vehicles and resources among enforcement units, would make it fairly easy for clandestine laboratories to operate without fear of detection. Police sources indicate that there is also a strong likelihood that marijuana cultivation exists in the hill country areas of Timor-Leste. Narcotics trafficking from neighboring Indonesia appears to be taking place on a small scale, but there are no indications to date that Timor-Leste is being used as a transit point for narcotics trafficking to other countries. Commensurate with the limited production and trafficking, illegal domestic drug use appears to be low, but is probably rising.

Timor-Leste is not yet a party to the 1988 UN Convention. Law enforcement responsibilities are currently shared between the National Police of Timor-Leste (PNTL) and a United Nations police presence that is likely to remain in Timor-Leste through 2012. Local law enforcement capacity is limited, due especially to low levels of education and training among the police force and insufficient investment in infrastructure, equipment, and logistical capacity. Nevertheless, with support from international peacekeepers, the PNTL has made modest efforts to identify and raid establishments associated with narcotics trafficking. Despite a limited number of arrests, however, a similar lack of capacity in the prosecutorial and judicial system has hampered efforts to prosecute and convict those arrested. Another obstacle is the ability to analyze narcotics sample seized promptly. To date, PNTL has relied upon Australian counterparts, who send narcotics to Australian government laboratories for analysis. PNTL officials have cited delays and lack of responses as a hindrance to prosecuting suspects. In some cases, positive reactions acquired through narcotics test kits have been sufficient for prosecution.

There are no drug rehabilitation and treatment programs in Timor-Leste.

Despite these shortcomings, Timorese government policy strongly condemns and seeks to restrict and impede narcotics trafficking. Timor-Leste does not officially encourage or sanction drug trafficking; there are no indications that senior Timorese officials are involved in trafficking. To the contrary, many senior officials have spoken publicly of the dangers that narcotics present to Timorese society and of the need to undertake additional, stronger measures to counter narcotics trafficking.


Togo

A. Introduction

Togo is not a significant producer of drugs; however it plays an increasingly important role in the regional transport of narcotics. During 2009 the drug trade (particularly in hard drugs) continued to increase, and Togo is used more and more as a transit point for the inter-continental movement of drugs from South America through West Africa to Europe. Togo’s capacity to address the transnational flow of drugs is undercut by its inability to control corruption, the country’s extreme poverty and resultant lack of resources, staff training gaps, and long, porous borders.

The only drug cultivated in any significant quantity is cannabis, but even cannabis cultivation is limited. Cultivation is primarily for local demand, although some cross border distribution by small-scale dealers is suspected. Domestic use of cannabis is increasing. Heroin and cocaine, while not produced in Togo, are also available. Heroin is smuggled from Afghanistan, while cocaine is transported from South America. Drug abuse by Togo’s citizens is relatively rare, and there are few crimes resulting from drug use.

There are three agencies responsible for drug law enforcement—the police, the gendarmerie, and customs. Approximately one metric ton of cannabis is seized in Togo each year. Lome serves as a transit point for drugs on their way to Benin, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Ghana, and Niger on overland routes and ultimately to Europe. Togolese traffickers have developed distribution arrangements for drugs bound for Europe. According to police, most smugglers are long-term Lebanese residents or Nigerians, but police have also recently arrested a Colombian smuggling network in Lomé. The gendarmerie is also targeting Togolese traffickers. Togo’s long and relatively porous borders permit narcotics traffickers easy access/egress. Current law enforcement activity in Togo suggests greater complicity of GOT entities, facilitated through corruption, than was previously known. While in the past it was assumed that the largest quantities of drugs were trafficked through the Autonomous Port of Lomé, it is now evident that the traffickers are using the Lomé international airport as well as remote airfields for flights from Latin America, and land borders for vehicular transport of narcotics. Togo is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

The Central Office Against Drugs and Money Laundering (OCRTIDB) is responsible for investigating and arresting all persons involved in drug-related crimes. The office has approximately forty-five police and gendarmerie officers assigned to conduct investigations and enforcement operations. Security agencies are supposed to report all drug-related matters to the Director of the Central Office of OCRTIDB. The Director of the Central Office, in turn, is directly responsible to the Minister of Security. The reality, however, is that the police and gendarmerie conduct their own investigations and enforcement operations, lending to poor accountability for seized contraband and money. The National Anti-Drug Committee (CNAD), which consists of representatives from various offices, including security, defense, commerce and finance, meets periodically to coordinate. Togolese officials have reported that they have good working relations with Beninese authorities. In 2010, the OCRTIDB hired additional personnel and increased its presence at the Lomé airport. In addition, a new law to facilitate the extradition of drug dealers has been proposed and awaits passage by the National Assembly.

Togo is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances, and to the 1961 UN Single Convention, as amended by its 1972 Protocol. Togo is a party to the UN Corruption Convention and is also a party to the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime.

2. Supply Reduction

Bilateral and regional cooperation is strong and improving. The U.S. Navy donated two Defender boats to the Togolese Navy, which can be used for narcotics interdiction. In addition, bilateral and multilateral seminars and training opportunities increased during 2009, and included training offered by the U.S. DEA and French embassy to OCRTIDB. In January 2010, the OCRTIDB signed an accord for inter-agency information sharing and cooperation among drug enforcement units in Togo, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Peru, and Colombia. The number of drug-related arrests increased in 2009, and included several large seizures of and public destruction of marijuana plants. Only occasional spot checks are made of passengers at the airport. The Port of Lomé's cargo screening ability of 100 containers per day should make easier the interdiction of drugs arriving by sea; however, many are skeptical of the port authorities' willingness to use this tool aggressively. Arrests have been mainly at the land border crossings and in Lomé town itself; the vast majority of trafficked drugs cross land borders. Arrests are sometimes made after a tip, but are most often made in the course of other routine law enforcement activities, such as traffic security or customs checks. The greatest obstacles that the Government of Togo (GOT) faces in apprehending drug traffickers are widespread official corruption, the government’s lack of computer technology, communication and coordination, and mutual distrust among security agencies and interested ministries. While all agencies are nominally required to report narcotics related crimes to the Central Office, in practice there is no effective reporting, record keeping, or cross-agency communication process.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

The National Anti-Drug Committee has sponsored anti-drug films and counter-narcotics discussion groups. For national anti-drug day, June 26, the committee worked with civil society organizations to hold a week of anti-drug activities, including awareness raising seminars, debates, a march against drugs, and, together with the OCRTIDB, a ceremony for the destruction of seized drugs. In addition, the Minister of Security and Civil Protection organized a counternarcotics conference from December 8-14, which included experts from the EU and UN.

4. Corruption

The Anti-Corruption Commission made no drug-related arrests of government officials. Togo’s former chief narcotics officer, who was held under house arrest for several months in 2006 under suspicion that he had diverted a quantity of captured drugs being held as evidence for resale, was released in September 2006 and was assigned as the commander of a gendarme company in Dapaong, in Northern Togo. He has since been promoted and is currently the regional gendarmerie commander for the northern part of Togo. Reports continue to circulate that unnamed officials in various GOT agencies can be bribed to allow illicit narcotics to transit to or through Togo. After the recent arrest of a mostly foreign drug trade network in Togo, fresh rumors regarding corrupt Togolese officials are spreading widely. No officials have been arrested thus far, and it appears increasingly likely that Togo will miss a good opportunity to send a clear message to its public, its public officials and to the drug trade organizations regarding its tough stance on narco-trafficking. As a matter of government policy, the Government of Togo does not encourage or facilitate illicit production or distribution of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, nor does it encourage or facilitate the laundering of proceeds from illegal drug transactions.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

The primary narcotics-related policy goal of the U.S. is to help the GOT combat the international trafficking of drugs. The U.S. seeks to help the government improve its ability to interdict illicit narcotics entering Togo through training opportunities and technical support, and also seeks to assist local authorities to improve their capacity to prosecute suspected drug traffickers.

D. Conclusion

U.S. cooperation with Togolese counternarcotics officials will continue. USG-funded narcotics assistance will be used for Togolese counternarcotics infrastructure improvements. With the support of the regional Drug Enforcement Administration representative based in Lagos, the U.S. Embassy will continue to look for ways to provide counternarcotics trafficking training to Togolese law enforcement personnel. Togo’s emerging willingness to confront the issue of illicit drugs is hampered by severe corruption problems among Togolese officials and the weak state of GOT finances.

That said, relations with Togolese officials in both the Ministry of Security and the OCRTIDB are excellent, and improve every time there is a training or joint operation. Access and responsiveness on the part of OCRTIDB are good and getting better. However, the overall effectiveness of its efforts is limited by endemic corruption and unwillingness/inability at senior levels of government to address the problem.


Trinidad and Tobago

A. Introduction

Trinidad and Tobago’s location off the coast of Venezuela, porous air and sea borders and direct air or sea routes to Europe, West Africa, the U.S., Canada, and the Caribbean make it ideally suited for drug transshipment. Trafficking of South American cocaine and marijuana from South America and the Caribbean is prevalent, along with smaller amounts of heroin. The local petrochemical industry generates imports and exports of precursor chemicals that can be used for drug production, but the Government of Trinidad and Tobago (GOTT) has instituted controls to prevent their diversion. Trinidad and Tobago’s domestic drug production and illegal drug use center on marijuana.

After elections in May 2010, a new administration took over the GOTT, and counternarcotics efforts remain a priority. However, the new government has de-emphasized regional efforts and assistance programs, including some security-related projects that would impact counternarcotics efforts, in order to focus greater attention on domestic issues. The GOTT has since signaled it will scale back previously planned maritime asset acquisitions, while undertaking efforts to restructure its security apparatus, improve law enforcement efficiency, and address internal corruption. The GOTT’s overall budget for drug control is assigned to various agencies and a comprehensive total figure is not available. However, the budget for Trinidad and Tobago’s Anti-Drug Plan 2008-2012 is $50.6 million.

The GOTT struggles to effectively coordinate and implement its drug-control assets, and maintenance issues, corruption, and gaps in the legislative framework remain challenges. The GOTT continues to solicit international assistance to combat the illegal drug trade.

Trinidad and Tobago is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

Trinidad and Tobago continues to be committed to narcotics control. The GOTT has dedicated resources through the Organized Crime, Narcotics, and Firearms Bureau (OCNFB), the Counter Drug and Crime Task Force (CDCTF), the Criminal Investigation Unit (CIU), the Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard (TTCG), the Customs and Excise Marine Interdiction Unit (MIU), the National Drug Council (NDC), and the National Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention Programme (NADAPP).

In 2010, the GOTT continued its efforts to disrupt criminal gang activity through legislative reform. A law authorizing wire-tapping was passed in December 2010, and parliamentary committee action is pending on legislation targeting criminal organizations, proceeds of crime, bail reform and enhanced penalties for gang association and the illegal use of firearms. New rules are being implemented to address gang activity in prisons, and efforts are under way to thwart the use of cellular phones by prisoners.

The GOTT received delivery of six fast patrol craft (FPC) in early 2010 to enhance coastline patrol capability. After the mid-year elections, the new GOTT administration announced it would cancel the purchase of three 90-meter offshore patrol vessels (OPV) that were to have been delivered in 2010 and 2011, claiming defective systems and production delays. There are no plans to supplant that deepwater patrol capability in the short-term. The FPC’s represent an increase in coastal interdiction potential, but human resource and maintenance capacity problems may prove to be limiting factors over time. The GOTT also increased regional radar capabilities in 2010.

The GOTT has stepped up Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) recruiting and training, in order to stem a trend in declining forces and fill vacant positions. In an effort to improve coordination and law enforcement legitimacy, the new government plans to restructure the Special Anti-Crime Unit of Trinidad and Tobago (SAUTT), including reducing the number of foreign contract advisors and potentially shifting some of its law enforcement functions to the TTPS.

In late 2010, three new passenger x-rays were installed in Trinidad’s Piarco International Airport, replacing older models that were not fully functional. The GOTT’s 2010 budget shows investment in new equipment such as radars and increased Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force (TTDF) training. The GOTT has purchased four Augusta-Westland AW139 helicopters for the Air Guard, two to be delivered in mid-2011, and the others in 2012. These will be used for surface surveillance and drug interdiction, among other functions. Lastly, the GOTT is reviewing ways to improve the Coast Guard’s marine interdiction capacity, and several of its stations were allocated funds for upgrades in 2010.

Although money laundering and proceeds of crime legislation was enacted in 2009, Trinidad and Tobago’s year-old Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) is not yet fully staffed or Egmont-accredited, and no convictions have resulted from the new laws.

Trinidad and Tobago is party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1961 UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, the 1972 Protocol amending the Single Convention, and the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances. Mutual legal assistance and extradition treaties with the U.S. entered into force in November 1999. A bilateral maritime counterdrug agreement between the USG and GOTT is also in force. The GOTT is also a party to the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its three Protocols. Trinidad and Tobago is a member of the Organization of American States' Inter-American Drug Abuse Commission (OAS/CICAD). In May 2009 the GOTT signed a policy agreement with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) of the U.S. Justice Department to provide access and utilization of e-Trace services.

The GOTT continues to cooperate with the United States on extradition, mutual legal assistance, chemical controls, and general narcotics control law enforcement. Trinidad and Tobago is a party to several international, hemispheric, regional and bilateral agreements on drug control collaboration. However, weaknesses in border security, breakdowns in information-sharing, and a lack of efficient control systems pose challenges to the country’s ability to effectively participate in these efforts.

2. Supply Reduction

Drug cultivation in Trinidad and Tobago is limited to marijuana. Law enforcement agencies conducted effective marijuana eradication exercises in 2010, but the number of such exercises dropped from 32 in 2009 to 19 in 2010, in part due to staffing gaps in key positions. Accordingly, while 6,050 fewer seedlings were eradicated and fewer hectares were destroyed compared to the same period in 2009, the destruction of plants increased by 13 metric tons, and year-end statistics were generally comparable to previous years.

The majority of drug seizures in Trinidad and Tobago are made at the airports and sea ports. While one notable seizure in October 2010 netted 26.3 metric tons of marijuana found inside a single cargo container in Port of Spain, cargo shipments remain largely under-screened.

GOTT officials believe there was an increase in the volume of marijuana shipments through both of Trinidad and Tobago’s international airports and seaports in 2010, even as the seizure rate reported by the Organized Crime, Narcotics, and Firearms Bureau (OCNFB) declined by 245 kilograms from the same reporting period in 2009. OCNFB data indicated that cocaine seizures likewise decreased by 46 percent from 2009, and that no heroin was seized in 2010, down from 2 seizures in 2009. Other law enforcement sources reported that overall seizure rates were likely higher than OCNFB statistics, and that staffing shortfalls may account both for a reduced capacity to interdict shipments and for statistical inconsistencies.

Cocaine arriving in Trinidad from South America for transshipment to Europe, Africa, Canada and the United States is primarily smuggled via small fishing vessels known as pirogues. Pleasure boats and commercial aircraft are also utilized. Most marijuana arrives in Trinidad and Tobago from other Caribbean islands, including as far away as Jamaica, via pirogues, loose cargo vessels and parasitic devices attached to the hulls of vessels. But as noted above, officials believe there was an increase in the frequency of marijuana shipments arriving at both of Trinidad and Tobago’s international airports and its seaports in 2010, as well as in the quantities of marijuana moved.

Common drug smuggling techniques in and out of Trinidad and Tobago involve couriers ingesting or attaching drugs to their bodies, or transporting drugs in secret luggage compartments or loose in luggage. International commercial parcel delivery services are also used to transship narcotics, as are containerized and loose cargo shipping services. A relatively significant number of pleasure yachts moored in Trinidad during hurricane season present another avenue for the shipment of narcotics both in and out of the country. In September 2010, Spanish authorities, in cooperation with law enforcement officials from other countries, interdicted 1.5 metric tons of cocaine in a yacht that originated from Trinidad’s marinas at Chaguaramas.

There is also a concern that contraband prescription drugs are becoming increasingly available in Trinidad and Tobago.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

Trinidad and Tobago lacks data on its total addict population, but according to a CICAD (Inter-American Drug Abuse Commission) study from 2006, 11.97percent of 13-17 year olds reported having used marijuana. A 2002 NADAPP secondary school survey indicated that 13.7percent of students reported having used marijuana. Trinidad and Tobago has 29 drug rehabilitation facilities, 16 of which are in-patient. The GOTT dedicates significant resources to its National Anti-Drug Plan 2008-2012, which includes a pre-school intervention program, education at all levels of school, training for educators, anti-smuggling campaigns, and special event programs including Grand Fete and International Day Against Drugs.

Demand reduction initiatives in Trinidad and Tobago include the Police Youth Club program, organized sports, and alternative activities offered by government-sponsored training programs and NGOs. The Ministry of National Security’s Citizen Security Programme (CSP) focuses resources on 22 high-needs communities in an effort to address a number of societal risk factors that contribute to crime and violence, including those associated with drug use. In 2010, the GOTT continued anti-drug programs for pre-school, primary, and secondary school children. The GOTT supports anti-drug messaging at special events, and funds demand reduction activities for youth.

4. Corruption

Trinidad and Tobago is a party to the Inter-American Convention against Corruption and the UN Convention against Corruption. During 2010, there were no charges of drug-related corruption filed against GOTT senior officials, and, as a matter of government policy, the GOTT does not encourage or facilitate the illicit production or distribution of drugs, or the laundering of proceeds from the sale of illicit drugs. The 1987 Prevention of Corruption Act and the 2000 Integrity in Public Life Act outline the ethical rules and responsibilities of government personnel. The Integrity in Public Life Act requires public officials to declare and explain the source of their assets, and an Integrity Commission initiates investigations into allegations of corruption. The Integrity Commission ceased functioning for several months, but was reconstituted in March, 2010, and publicly released the names of government officials that had not met financial reporting requirements.

At the GOTT’s request, the USG has assisted in the vetting of officials selected for training and those entering some elite law enforcement units, but most of Trinidad and Tobago’s law enforcement and customs officials are not rigorously vetted on an ongoing basis. Among public and private sector airport employers, for example, only American Airlines uses polygraph tests in their employee vetting. Media and anecdotal reports of corruption in the ranks of the police, the Coast Guard, customs officers, and port employees are common.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

The United States and Trinidad and Tobago have a long history of cooperation on law enforcement and narcotics control. In 2010, Trinidad and Tobago signed the Inaugural Caribbean – U.S. Security Cooperation Dialogue Declaration of Principles. Trinidad and Tobago has actively participated on the planning commission for the Caribbean Basin Security Initiative (CBSI).

The USG provides training, equipment, and technical assistance to the GOTT through a number of agencies including U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG), and the State Department’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL). In 2010, the USCG provided the Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard with training in maritime law enforcement, small boat maintenance, port security and command and control. In 2010, the DEA assisted in 115 seizures and arrests. The GOTT-funded U.S. Customs Advisory Team continues to provide technical assistance to Trinidad and Tobago’s Customs and Excise Division in tracking and intercepting marine vessels, including cargo container ships. The Bilateral Maritime Law Enforcement Agreement was used once in 2010. INL funds were used to train and equip police units and Customs enforcement units in 2010 that contributed to counternarcotics efforts, and to bolster demand reduction programs.

D. Conclusion

While Trinidad and Tobago has dedicated resources and political will to drug control efforts, overall, there does not appear to be a marked change in its drug-control performance in 2010. Some initiatives, including demand reduction programs for school children and at-risk youth, may take years to show results. Other strategies, like the deployment of new fast patrol vessels and helicopters, and improved recruitment and training of law enforcement personnel, could yield positive changes more quickly.

Border control could be improved through better surveillance coordination and increased marine interdictions. Increasing border patrols on the western side of Trinidad would make trafficking more difficult for smugglers arriving from Venezuela. At the air and sea ports, improving the level of passenger and cargo screening, including better targeting, profiling and automation of inspections, could increase seizure rates and act as a greater deterrent.

Continued progress in legislative reform should contribute to more effective detection of trafficking and improved conviction rates. For example, the new wiretap legislation may pave the way for the use of intercepted communications as evidence in court. Civil forfeiture legislation that was passed in 2010 should allow the GOTT to seize funds and assets identified as proceeds of illegal activities, and to use them to fund law enforcement efforts. Criminal enterprise legislation is needed to address criminal gang activities, and improve the ability to dismantle criminal organizations. The reintroduction of plea bargaining, and the effective use of dedicated drug courts, could streamline court processes in general, and improve the overall credibility of the criminal justice system. Resources for investigating and responding to internal fraud and bribery in the various narcotics control forces might also decrease corruption and increase their effectiveness.

Effective use of technology could also improve Trinidad and Tobago’s narcotics control efforts; the use of communications tracking tools yielded direct results in 2010. Automated processing systems would allow for better tracking of shipments through the air and sea ports, people entering and leaving the country, and of prisoners entering and moving through the penal system. Better handling and wider acceptance of forensic evidence could speed court proceedings and improve conviction rates. Improved information coordination would better optimize the use of radar and other surveillance technology in order to stem the flow of drugs into the country.


Turkey

A. Introduction

Turkey is affected by three main heroin drug trafficking routes, namely: the Balkan route, the northern (Black Sea) route and the eastern Mediterranean route. Cocaine enters Turkey from South America. Cannabis enters Turkey through Lebanon, Albania and Afghanistan. Turkey acts as a transit route for opium and its derivates originating from Afghanistan en route to Western Europe, for methamphetamine from Iran for markets in the Far East, and also acts as a transit route for captagon tablets originating in Eastern Europe en route to countries in the Middle East.

Heroin is smuggled over land from Afghanistan, sometimes through Pakistan, to Iran and then to Turkey. Opiates and hashish are also smuggled to Turkey overland from Afghanistan via Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, and Georgia. While the Balkan Route on to Western Europe remains heavily used, intelligence and investigations suggest that traffickers also use a more northerly route through Azerbaijan, Georgia, Russia, and Ukraine. In addition to use of the northern route, traffickers are using vehicle ferries to move TIR (long-haul, customs-sealed) trucks from Greece and Turkey to Italy. From Italy, the TIRs are driven to other countries in Europe where the heroin, smuggled in either hidden compartments or within legitimate cargo, is delivered. The total amount of opium seized in Turkey remains relatively small when compared to heroin seizures. Most of the heroin trafficked via Turkey is marketed in Western Europe, although some heroin and opium is also smuggled from Turkey to the U.S. Turkish law enforcement authorities continue to seize synthetic drugs that have been manufactured in Northern and Eastern European countries. The majority of the synthetic drug seizures have occurred as the drugs were being shipped through Turkey to countries in the Middle East.

Turkish-based traffickers control much of the heroin marketed to Western Europe. Large drug trafficking organizations and major traffickers based in Turkey are frequently involved in both heroin sales and transport, and several have also been involved in the production and/or smuggling of synthetic drugs. Many major traffickers based in Turkey are ethnic Kurds or Iranians, and many of the same individuals and families have been involved in smuggling contraband for years. Ethnic Kurds generally live in the areas where opiates enter Turkey from the east; however, in recent years, large numbers of ethnic Kurds (including smugglers) have moved to larger cities in Turkey and even to other countries in Europe. Some have continued drug smuggling in their new locations. Some criminal elements in Turkey reportedly have interests in heroin laboratories operating in Iran near the Iranian-Turkish border. In recent years, however, there appears to be more heroin arriving in Turkey as a finished product from Afghanistan. There is no appreciable cultivation of illicit narcotics in Turkey other than cannabis grown primarily for domestic consumption. Turkey and India are the two traditional licit opium-growing countries recognized by the USG and the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB). Opium for pharmaceuticals is cultivated and refined in Turkey under strict domestic controls and in accordance with international treaty obligations. The Turkish Grain Board strictly and successfully controls Turkey’s licit opium poppy cultivation and pharmaceutical morphine production program, with no apparent diversion into the illicit market. Drug abuse remains modest in scale in Turkey compared to other countries.

Turkish law enforcement organizations focus their efforts on stemming the traffic of drugs and intercepting precursor chemicals. The Department of Anti-Smuggling and Organized Crime of the Turkish National Police (TNP), Jandarma, and Coast Guard are all part of the Ministry of Interior and have significant anti-narcotics responsibilities. The TNP has responsibility for law enforcement in Turkey’s cities and towns. The Jandarma, a paramilitary police organization, is responsible for all law enforcement in rural areas. TNP-developed intelligence frequently leads to rural areas where the Jandarma has jurisdiction and, in these cases, the two agencies work together to conduct investigations and effect seizures. The Undersecretariat of Customs falls under the authority of a State Minister. The narcotics enforcement arm of Turkish Customs is the Directorate General of Customs Guards. There are eighteen regional directorates and 136 subunits. The Ministry of Health is the competent authority for issues relating to importation of chemicals for legitimate use. The Ministry of Finance oversees the financial intelligence unit, known by its Turkish acronym as MASAK, which has responsibility for investigation of potential money laundering activities.

Drug proceeds are often moved to and through Turkey via the informal sector, despite the fact that alternative remittance systems are illegal in Turkey and only banks and authorized money transfer companies are officially allowed to move money. In general, investigations of money exchange bureaus, jewelry stores, and other businesses in Turkey believed to be part of the underground banking system (hawala) are initiated only if the business is directly tied to an existing drug or other criminal investigation.

Turkey is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances, and the 1961 UN Single Convention, as amended by the 1972 Protocol. Turkey is also a party to the UN Convention against Corruption and the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its protocols on migrant smuggling, trafficking in persons, and illegal manufacturing and trafficking in firearms.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

Turkish law enforcement agencies are strongly committed to disrupting narcotics trafficking. The Turkish National Police (TNP) remains Turkey’s most proactive counternarcotics force, with the Jandarma and Customs continuing to play a significant role. Turkish authorities continue to seize large amounts of heroin and precursor chemicals. Given the scale of these seizures, it is likely that multi-ton amounts of heroin are smuggled through Turkey each year.

Although Turkey is a major donor to the UNODC, it is still eligible for bilateral assistance and assistance for projects that are regional in nature, and the UN funds a variety of projects in Turkey each year. UNODC continues to sponsor training sessions at the Turkish International Academy against Drugs and Organized Crime (TADOC) in Ankara. In 2009, TADOC organized 60 training programs for 1500 local and regional law enforcement officers. A total of 51 programs for 816 foreign officers were held at TADOC in 2009, including officers from 25 countries including, Azerbaijan, Israel, Sudan, Kosovo, Lebanon, Macedonia, Kazakhstan, and Pakistan. Students from Palestine also attended the academy. These training programs focused on drug law enforcement, intelligence analysis, illegal immigration and human smuggling, interview techniques, surveillance techniques, and antiterrorism training for judges and prosecutors. TADOC also trained a total of 639 Turkish officers in computer-based training centers throughout Turkey in 2009. TADOC organized 51 programs for 800 participants from the NATO-Russia Council, UNODC, OSCE, the Turkish International Cooperations and Development Agency (TIKA) and several other mutual security cooperation activities.

Turkish law enforcement cooperates closely with European and U.S. agencies. Turkey continues to play a key role in Operation Containment (a DEA regional program to reduce the flow of Afghan heroin to Western Europe), as well as in other regional efforts.

During 2010, Turkish counternarcotics officials began a series of efforts to address the increase in narcotic smugglers using international airports to smuggle illegal drugs either from Turkey or through Turkey. Since the inception of this program in January 2010, 133 couriers were arrested and over 329 kilograms of illegal drugs were seized, a dramatic increase from the previous year.

2. Supply Reduction

The Government of Turkey (GOT) devotes significant financial and human resources to counternarcotics activities. Many Border control initiatives and upgrades were completed in the last few years, including the deployment of x-ray machines and ion scanners to the Eastern borders of Turkey.

Turkey continues to serve as a transit point for large amounts of heroin being smuggled to Western Europe. Turkish-based traffickers and brokers operate in conjunction with narcotics smugglers, laboratory operators, and money launderers in and outside Turkey, who finance and control the smuggling of opiates to Turkey from Afghanistan.

The chart below summarizes the seizures made in Turkey in the January-June 2010 period.

Heroin

8,167 kg

Hashish

26,778 kg

Opium

476 kg

Cocaine

184 kg

ATS

155 kg

Ecstasy

352,733 dosage units

Methamphetamine

87 kg

Turkish authorities reported an increase in synthetic drug seizures throughout Turkey beginning in 2005. Most of the amphetamine type stimulants (ATS) seized in Turkey is produced in Eastern Europe. Turkish law enforcement reports some synthetic drug production, primarily amphetamines such as Captagon (the brand name for fenethylline). Amphetamine production is a relatively new phenomenon in Turkey.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

Drug-related treatment in Turkey is the responsibility of the Science Committee for Methods of Drug Addiction. The main tasks of this committee are to monitor, accredit and evaluate treatment services. Drug-related treatment is provided mainly by public agencies, but private entities and NGOs supplement government efforts. Funding for drug treatment services is mainly provided by the state and through health insurance funds.

Turkey prefers treatment methods which do not rely on opiate-based replacement drugs like methadone and buprenorphine. They believe treatment structured in this way is more likely to achieve a future drug-free life for addicts. The interventions in drug-free programs consist of psychotherapeutic methods and supporting methods, with the majority of drug related treatment services taking place within inpatient settings.

Treatment usage data in Turkey is provided by the Directorate General for Treatment Services of the Ministry of Health. In 2007, data was gathered from 17 national inpatient centers, out of the 19 inpatient centers. During 2007, a total of 2,492 inpatient clients entered treatment, out of which 1,394 were first-time clients. Data regarding clients suggest that 43.7 percent of all clients entering treatment reported opiates as their primary drug of abuse, followed by 36.4 percent for cannabis and 3.9 percent for cocaine. Among first time clients, a slightly different distribution was identified, with 46.4 percent for cannabis, followed by 32.5 percent for opiates and 4.5 percent for ecstasy. Furthermore, in 2007, 34 percent of all clients entering treatment were aged less than 25 years. A higher share of young people was reported among new treatment clients, with 42 percent under the age of 25 years. As far as gender distribution is concerned 95 percent of all clients were male percent. A similar distribution in gender was reported among first time treatment clients with 96 percent male and 4 percent female.

While drug abuse remains modest in scale in Turkey compared to other countries, the number of addicts using treatment clinics is increasing. Although the Turkish Government is increasingly aware of the need to combat drug abuse, the agencies responsible for drug awareness and treatment remain under-funded. The Health Ministry does not conduct regular, periodic drug abuse surveys. The most recent European School Survey Project on Alcohol and Other Drugs (ESPAD Survey) was conducted in 2003. According to the result of this study, 5 percent of the sample reported the use of inhalants at least once in their life (lifetime prevalence), 4 percent cannabis, 2 percent ecstasy, 2 percent heroin, and 2 percent cocaine. Prevalence of cannabis use within the last year was reported as 5 percent and within the last month as 3 percent. The Ministry of Health was planning to conduct the ESPAD in 2007; however, objections from the Ministry of Education with regard to some survey questions resulted in Turkey’s non-participation. The next ESPAD survey will be in 2011; it is not clear if Turkey will participate.

Turkey became a full member of the European Monitoring Center for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) after the European Parliament ratified Turkey’s participation in October 2006, following a successful EU twinning project. Turkey’s national focal point for this effort is the Turkish Monitoring Center for Drugs and Drug Addiction, known as TUBIM. TUBIM is charged with collecting data on drug use and addiction in Turkey, reporting on new drugs found in Turkey, and for conducting demand reduction activities.

4. Corruption

As a matter of government policy, Turkey does not encourage or facilitate illicit production or distribution of narcotic or psychotropic drugs or other controlled substances, or the laundering of proceeds from illegal drug transactions. Similarly, no senior level government official is alleged to have participated in such activities. As in most countries, it is likely that some corruption is present among enforcement personnel. The Turkish Penal Code outlines specific penalties for official corruption by Turkish Government employees.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

The U.S. and Turkey cooperate in law enforcement matters under a 1979 treaty on extradition and mutual assistance in legal matters. The USG wants to capitalize on Turkey’s work as a regional leader in counternarcotics training and education. DEA and the US Embassy in Turkey work closely with Turkish officials to offer regional training opportunities to Turkish Law Enforcement officials throughout the country and at the TADOC center to provide additional investigative and prosecutorial tools to Turkish officials and their international counterparts. Turkey hosts several international counter narcotic forums with the goals to enhance the investigative abilities of both Turkish and other international partners, to increase their willingness to cooperate internationally on joint cases, and to build relationships between the countries’ law enforcement agencies. DEA reports excellent cooperation with Turkish officials. Turkish counternarcotics forces are both professional and technically sophisticated. The U.S. will continue to try to strengthen Turkey’s ability to combat narcotics trafficking, money-laundering, and financial crimes.

D. Conclusion

Turkish law enforcement agencies remain strongly committed to disrupting narcotics trafficking and we expect this commitment to continue into the future. During 2010, Turkey maintained forward momentum in the areas of institution building, supply reduction, demand reduction and treatment. The U.S. will continue to work with Turkish law enforcement agencies to strengthen Turkey’s ability to combat narcotics trafficking, money-laundering, and financial crimes. Embassy Ankara will focus its efforts on utilizing Turkey’s work as a regional leader in counternarcotics training and education. Turkey continues to play a key role in Operation Containment, as well as in other regional efforts. The USG plans to offer regional training opportunities at the Turkish International Academy against Drugs and Organized Crime (TADOC) to provide additional investigative and prosecutorial tools to Turkish officials and their international counterparts. Likewise, UNODC will sponsor training sessions at the TADOC in Ankara, including programs focused on drug law enforcement, intelligence analysis, illegal immigration and human smuggling, interview techniques, surveillance techniques, and antiterrorism training for judges and prosecutors.


Turkmenistan

A. Introduction

Turkmenistan is a transshipment route for narcotics traffickers attempting to smuggle Afghan opiates to Turkish, Russian and European markets, either directly or through Iran. It is not, however, a major producer or source country for illegal drugs or precursor chemicals. It shares a rugged and remote 744-kilometer border with Afghanistan and a 992-kilometer boundary with Iran. Most illegal drug seizures occur along those borders.

Counternarcotics efforts continue to be a government policy priority. Internal narcotics sales have reportedly dropped since the government stopped the practice of granting pardons to prisoners previously convicted of drug-related crimes. Prices for heroin have reportedly increased, which has decreased demand.

Major developments during 2010 included the largest-ever seizure of opium trafficked from Iran, including the arrest of nine perpetrators; Operation "Goknar - 2010" (Opium Poppy - 2010) conducted against narcotics cultivation; the arrest of over 20 criminals involved in a drug-trafficking ring; and adoption of an amended Criminal Code, which eliminated punishment for consumption and possession of small amounts of drugs. According to official statistics, Turkmen authorities seized a total of 1921 kilograms of illegal narcotics during the year 2009 and 672 kilograms of drugs during the first six months of 2010.

Turkmenistan continues some cooperation with international organizations and diplomatic missions, but its law enforcement agencies are still hampered by a lack of resources, training and equipment. Turkmenistan is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

The government directs the bulk of its law enforcement resources and manpower towards stopping the flow of drugs either directly from Afghanistan or via Iran. Common methods of transporting illegal narcotics include concealment in cargo and passenger vehicles, deliveries by pedestrian carriers or animal transport, and in some cases, by concealment in the body cavities or stomachs of humans and animals. Turkmenistan's law enforcement efforts at the Turkmenistan-Uzbekistan border have been more focused on interdicting smuggled commercial goods than on narcotics, thus providing an opening for drug traffickers. Commercial truck traffic from Iran continues to be heavy, and Caspian Sea ferry traffic from Turkmenistan to Azerbaijan and Russia continues to be an opportune smuggling route.

President Berdimuhamedov continued to stress at government meetings that the war against drugs should be a consistent and uncompromising priority. During the State Security Council meeting in February 2010, the president said the struggle against drugs should be a joint effort of law enforcement and all citizens, and urged provincial governors, mayors and heads of public organizations to wage a decisive battle against drug addicts and dealers. Internal narcotics sales have reportedly dropped since President Berdimuhamedov stopped the practice of granting pardons to prisoners previously convicted of drug-related crimes. Prices for heroin have reportedly increased which has decreased demand and pushed many addicts to shift to drugs like opium or hashish. As in the past, the State Counter Narcotics Service (SCNS) held a "drug burn" ceremony in June, an event that coincided with the UN International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, at which 674 kilograms of narcotics were destroyed. In October, the president promoted the Chief of the SCNS to the rank of General Major for outstanding service.

The National Program for Combating Illegal Drug Trafficking and Assistance to Drug and Psychotropic Substance Addicts, 2006 - 2010 remains in effect. Key elements of the program's agenda include increased regional cooperation, prevention of drug-related crimes committed by minors, enhanced border security, training for law enforcement agencies to combat organized crime, and increased counter-terrorism efforts. The National Program for 2011-2015 is currently under development and will focus efforts on coordination of law enforcement efforts to combat drug trafficking, treatment of drug users, and study and application of international experience.

On May 20, 2010, President Berdimuhamedov signed into law a revised Criminal Code. The revised code eliminated Article 298, which imposed fines and/or prison terms for the acquisition and/or possession of small amounts of narcotics for personal use. As a result, government authorities are able to provide treatment for drug addicts, rather than punishing them.

2. Supply Reduction

The State Drug Coordination Committee made available Turkmenistan's drug seizure data for the first six months of 2010, which included 79.1 kg of heroin; 448.3 kg of opium; Marijuana: 31 kg 510 grams; Hashish: 88 kg 769 grams; Poppy straw: 24 kg. 300 grams; Total: 672 kg. 114 grams. Additionally, the government provided full drug seizure statistics for the year 2009. Authorities seized 1921.3 kilograms of drugs in 2009.

In June, SCNS reported the largest-ever seizure of opium trafficked from Iran, including the arrest of nine perpetrators. A total of 237.4 kilograms of opium and 12.8 grams of heroin were seized during the operation. Additionally, SCNS seized several vehicles; $337,023 and 28,722 Turkmen manats ($10,077) in cash, and several apartments in Ashgabat that had been purchased with drug proceeds.

An operation called "Goknar - 2010" (Opium Poppy - 2010) was conducted in mid-April by special forces of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) and SCNS in the Garagum Desert villages of Darwaza, Bokurdak, Bori, Ataguyi and Yerbent, and other remote areas. The operation focused on searching for, identifying and destroying naturally growing or illegally cultivated narcotic plants, mostly opium poppy. There was no information on the quantity of drugs seized and destroyed during the course of the operation. Televised reports showed seven offenders, mostly shepherds, who were arrested for growing opium poppy plants. The youngest, a 21 year-old, confessed in the interview that he was arrested for planting 5100 poppy plants in Ishankow village in the Garagum Desert.

There is no evidence of production of synthetic drugs in the country. SCNS officers have stated that there have been no seizures of synthetic drugs.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

The Ministry of Health operates seven drug treatment clinics, one in Ashgabat, one in Serdar City, and one in each of the five provincial administrative centers. Addicts can receive treatment at these clinics without revealing their identity and all clinic visits are kept confidential. The Government of Turkmenistan released drug abuse statistics to UNODC for the first time in March 2010. The statistics included the number of registered male, female, and intravenous drug users in country for the years 1999 to 2006 and by regions for the year 2006. In 2006, the most recent year for which statistics were available, there were a total of 33, 697 registered drug users, of which 32,206 were male and 1491 female.

The reported number of intravenous drug users in 2000 was 5,223. In 2006, this figure was 8,581.

Operated by Turkmenistan Red Crescent Society, the Drug Demand Reduction Program (DDRP), funded by the Department of State (INL), has been operating in the country since August 2008. The DDRP's staff and volunteers have conducted an active outreach among young people about the risks of drug use. On the occasion of the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking in June, the DDRP conducted several public activities, including the distribution of brochures on the harmful effects of drug abuse, drawing contests and public discussions. The events aroused much public interest, as well as enthusiasm about discussing the issue openly in public on the streets of Ashgabat and other cities.

Writings on the hazards of drugs have appeared widely in publications such as "Adalat" (Justice) and other government-owned newspapers. The Turkmen government is gradually coming to the realization that public awareness is critical to its efforts to fight drug addiction among the population.

Turkmenistan is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1961 UN Single Convention and its 1972 Protocol, and the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances. Turkmenistan is a party to the UN Convention against Corruption, the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, and its three protocols.

4. Corruption

The government does not encourage or facilitate illicit production or distribution of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, nor does it encourage or facilitate the laundering of proceeds from illegal drug transactions. Nevertheless, law enforcement officials' low salaries and broad general powers foster an environment in which corruption occurs. A general distrust of the police by the public, fueled by evidence of police officers soliciting bribes, indicates a problematic level of corruption in law enforcement. Payments to lower-level officials at border crossing points to facilitate passage of smuggled goods occur frequently. Reports persist that senior government officials are directly linked to the drug trade.

In August, 2010, SCNS, in cooperation with the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MVD) and the Ministry of National Security (MNB), identified and detained a group of 20 criminals from Balkan, Ahal and Lebap provinces involved in a drug trafficking and distribution scheme. The group was involved in smuggling opium and heroin from Iran and distributing it through dealers in Ahal and Lebap. One of the detainees, Amanberdi Nurjanov, the chairman of the state-controlled "Dayhan" Bank branch in Etrek District, Balkan Province, was involved in the consumption and sale of opium. Narcotics (65 kilos of opium and 2.6 kilos of heroin), more than $35,000, several vehicles, apartments, cattle and other property acquired with drug proceeds was confiscated. Following the case, President Berdimuhamedov dismissed the national chairman of the "Dayhan" Bank for "losing control over its personnel."

In early January 2010, a senior sergeant from the Military Unit of Serdar Etrap was arrested for smuggling 50 kilos of opium from Iran. The Minister of Defense reprimanded several high ranking MOD officials and dismissed the chief of the smuggler’s military unit. The involvement of high-ranking military and Border Service officials in cross-border smuggling is reportedly rampant.

In late April 2010, President Berdimuhamedov reprimanded the governor of Ruhabat District in Ahal Province for the failure of law enforcement agencies to prevent the illegal cultivation of narcotic plants. The reprimand followed the president's warning to all governors that combating drug abuse should be their number one priority. There was no information about the narcotics case in Ruhabat that preceded this reprimand. It was the first reprimand given to a governor for drug enforcement- related issues. Previously, governors had not been held responsible for oversight of law enforcement activities within their districts.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

In January, State-INL launched the fourth round of English Language Training (ELT) classes for law enforcement officials, with 21 officials successfully completing the course in August. By expanding English language competency among Turkmen law enforcement officers, the course increased the potential for international cooperation, including training opportunities and information sharing.

During the year, the U.S. and Turkmen Governments signed the third and fourth Amendments to the existing bilateral Letter of Agreement (LOA) on Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement Assistance. The Amendments indicated continued Turkmen government support for the INL-funded English Language Training, Counternarcotics Capacity Building, and Forensic Scientists and Investigators projects. The Forensic Scientists and Investigators Project will provide technical assistance, training and practical exercises for SCNS and MVD investigators and forensic specialists on evidence collection, crime scene investigation, and forensic examination.

INL organized the following training courses for Turkmen law enforcement officials: a one-week Basic Crime Scene Investigation Course for Prosecutors, Police and Counternarcotics Officers in Ashgabat with experts from U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)/ICITAP; two one-week Drug Enforcement Seminars for 25 SCNS officers in Ashgabat and 21 SCNS officers in Turkmenabat conducted by experts from U.S. DEA's International Training Division; participation by three Turkmen Customs officers in the Commercial Vessels Boarding Program at the Federal Law Enforcement Academy in Charleston, South Carolina; and seaport antiterrorism training for a chief of the Sea Border Protection Department of the State Border Service at the Federal Law Enforcement Academy.

INL funded the participation of three government officials: a prosecutor, a chemist from SCNS, and a deputy chief of the Criminal Research Center of MVD at the 62nd Annual American Forensic Scientists meeting in Seattle.

The U.S. Government is in the final stages of preparation for the ground-breaking of a new U.S. assisted border crossing checkpoint at Sarakhs on the Iranian border. This project follows the successful completion of three similar projects on Turkmenistan's Uzbek, Afghan, and Iranian (Altyn Asyr) borders. The cost of the project estimated to be $5.2 million. The U.S. Government also provided communications equipment and training to the Border Service and Counternarcotics Service. The Turkmen government has implemented a program to build additional border crossing checkpoints according to the specifications of the U.S.-Government-funded checkpoints and has begun to purchase radio equipment and train personnel under a "train the trainer" model introduced by the U.S program.

D. Conclusion

The Turkmen government has begun to acknowledge openly the country's drug trafficking and abuse problems. Law enforcement efforts targeting drug cultivation and drug trafficking are given high profile coverage in state-controlled media. Public awareness efforts to discourage illegal drug use have been conducted successfully throughout the country. The fact that the Turkmen government provided complete drug seizure statistics this year, something that has been a sensitive issue for years, would appear to indicate a desire for enhanced cooperation with international donors.

Remaining engaged with all of Turkmenistan's counternarcotics enforcement agencies is necessary to encourage successful interagency coordination against narcotics trafficking. The U.S. Government plans to expand counternarcotics law enforcement agency training at the working level. As both Turkmenistan and U.S. officials identify areas for improved counternarcotics efforts, the United States will provide an appropriate integrated and coordinated response. Capacity building will focus on supply reduction through interdiction training, law enforcement institution building, the promotion of regional cooperation, and exchange of drug-related intelligence. The U.S. Government will also encourage the government of Turkmenistan to intensify long-term demand reduction efforts.


United Arab Emirates

A. Introduction

Although not a narcotics-producing country, the UAE’s proximity to Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iran and its position as an international transportation hub with active air and sea ports, and laissez-faire commerce-first orientation have made the UAE a popular transshipment point for heroin and other narcotics being smuggled to Europe, Asia, and Africa. Drug seizures in the last two years indicate that trafficking groups may increasingly be using the UAE as a staging point for narcotics such as Afghan heroin and hashish. The primary drug threats in the UAE are Afghan heroin and hashish; however, counterfeit prescription pills were also seized in large quantities during the past year. Official UAE statistics show that the Emirate of Dubai in particular has seen a dramatic increase in the number of people arrested and charged on drug-related crimes. In the first nine months of 2010, Dubai Police seized more than 922 kg of drugs, nearly triple the amount seized in the same period the previous year. Despite its anti-money laundering laws, the UAE’s relative political and financial stability and role as a regional financial hub make it an attractive center for money laundering by drug traffickers. The UAE is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention. There is no evidence of any major drug cultivation and/or production in the UAE.

High volumes of shipping through UAE ports as well as the UAE’s long (700 km) coastline render the UAE vulnerable to exploitation by narcotics traffickers. Though currently designated as a transit country, there are an increasing number of cases in which trafficking groups are using the UAE as a warehousing and distribution point, as opposed to merely a transit point. In 2010, UAE enforcement made several large seizures of heroin, hashish, and the stimulant pill “Captagon.” Investigations associated with these seizures revealed that the seized drugs were being staged in the UAE for further distribution to other countries.

While the rate of illegal drug use in the UAE is low by international standards, the most common drug used by residents in the Persian Gulf is “Captagon,” which is a methamphetamine-related drug that is manufactured in Eastern Europe and then smuggled overland via commercial trucks to the Gulf Countries. Captagon may be the most widely available drug in the Persian Gulf countries. Anecdotal reporting suggests that there also is a substantial diverted prescription drug and counterfeit prescription drug market in the UAE.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

The UAE continued to advance its national drug strategy focusing on intensifying security at the country's air and sea ports and patrols along the coastline, reducing demand for illegal drugs through educational campaigns, enforcing harsh penalties for trafficking, and rehabilitating drug addicts.

In October 2006, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) established a country office in the UAE to enhance cooperation with UAE law enforcement authorities. In 2007, the UAE was re-elected as an Asian regional representative to the UN’s Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND). The UAE's term will end in 2011.

In the summer of 2010, the United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC) opened a semi-regional office in Abu Dhabi, which followed an October 2008 agreement between the UN and UAE Ministry of Interior. The UAE government funded the estimated $3 million cost of the office and contributed an additional $50,000 to the UN counternarcotics program.

Since 2007, UNODC has been working on establishing the Gulf Center for Criminal Intelligence in Qatar, although it is not yet fully operational. The Center will serve as a joint operations center for sharing of law enforcement information from the six member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council: Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

UAE authorities also cooperate with other countries to stop narcotics trafficking. In 2007, the UAE Ambassador to Pakistan announced that the UAE had a drug liaison office in Islamabad and was in process of establishing a second in Karachi. In March 2009, Dubai Police and Germany’s Federal Police signed an agreement to combat organized crime, including the flow of narcotic drugs and money laundering.

The UAE is party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1961 UN Single Convention as amended by the 1972 Protocol and the 1988 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances. The UAE also is a party to the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and the UN Convention against Corruption.

2. Supply Reduction

A major regional financial center and hub for commercial shipping and trade, the UAE is a transshipment point for illegal narcotics from Afghanistan, to Europe, to Africa, and less significantly, to the United States. The UAE is also a key location for narcotics money laundering. Western Europe is the principal market for transiting drugs, and Africa is becoming an increasingly prominent market. Factors that contribute to the role of the UAE as a transshipment point are the emergence of Dubai and Sharjah as regional centers in the transportation of passengers and cargo, a porous land border with Oman, an easily accessible commercial banking system, and the fact that a number of ports in the UAE have free trade zones where transshipped cargo may not be subjected to the same inspection as goods that enter the country.

Though currently considered a transit country, drug seizures in the last two years indicate that the UAE is transitioning from a transit country to a staging point for Afghan heroin, hashish, precursor chemicals, and large quantities of illegal prescription pills. Regional drug trafficking organizations are increasingly using the UAE to stockpile drugs for future sale and re-shipment rather than simply as a transit point. Afghan drug trafficking organizations may also be using the UAE as a logistics hub for vehicles and other goods vital to the operations of the organization. Foreign drug brokers also are believed to come to the UAE to meet with regional supply organizations to negotiate international drug and pre-cursor chemical transactions that will take place outside of the UAE.

Drug traffickers use the modern and accessible facilities of the UAE’s airports and sea ports to move narcotics from source countries to their destinations. Heroin has been shown to be smuggled into, or transit the UAE via its numerous airports in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and in other Emirates, as well as via small wooden boats (dhows). Another popular method of drug smuggling is the use of human mules or carriers, who travel to Dubai, stay in the city for a day or two and then purchase a ticket to their final destination in order to frustrate inspections targeted on drug source countries at their final destinations. West African drug smuggling groups frequently use the UAE to aggregate loads and then reship the heroin onward to Europe, Asia, and Africa. The African broker then negotiates with buyers throughout the world for shipment of the heroin to its final distribution site and the heroin is sent via body couriers and express mail shipments.

Dubai Police Department figures show 922.4 kg of narcotics were seized by Dubai Police during January-September 2010 compared with 364.3 kg in the same period of 2009. Seizures included approximately 685 kg of hashish, 125 kg of heroin, 44 kg of codeine, seven kg of marijuana and other types of narcotics. On the other hand, narcotics cases dropped by 12 percent during the first half of 2010 in Sharjah, according to Sharjah Police. UAE Police arrested 1,145 people in connection with drugs, including 318 users, 194 distributors, 29 dealers and other persons caught in possession of narcotics. Asian expatriates topped the list of those arrested on drug charges, followed by citizens from other Gulf countries (303 people), non-GCC Arab nations (72 people) and five others with unknown nationality.

A seizure of approximately 2.2 million tablets of Captagon occurred on February 15, 2010, in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. This was the second large seizure of Captagon after approximately 4.2 million Captagon tablets, marked with the “Lexus” brand, were seized by Dubai Police in November 2009. The Captagon in that seizure was hidden between the folds of curtains imported from Syria and was being stored in a warehouse in the Emirate of Dubai when it was seized. A seizure of approximately 15 tons of acetic anhydride (AA)—the major precursor chemical to heroin—was made in June 2010. There have been several smaller seizures (totaling several hundred kilograms) of AA in the UAE.

A 1995 law stipulates capital punishment as the penalty for drug trafficking. Sentences usually are commuted to long-term imprisonment. In the first 10 months of 2010, courts across the UAE issued verdicts against 61 people accused of drug trafficking, possession, or addiction. The sentenced include Iranians, Arabs, Asians, Afghans, Pakistanis, Africans, Europeans, and several Emiratis. Notable cases included: In February 2010, Ras al Khaimah Criminal Court sentenced an Arab national and 4 Asians to the death penalty for an attempt to traffic more than 2 kilograms of opium and 1 kilogram of hashish. In March 2010, Dubai Court of First Instance sentenced three Emirati men to 5 to 25 years’ imprisonment on drug charges. In April 2010, the Federal Supreme Court upheld a sentence of 4 years’ imprisonment against a traveler for consuming hashish in a foreign country before coming to the UAE. In May 2010, a Dubai police prison guard was sentenced to three years in jail for taking a bribe of 6,000 UAE Dirhams (AED) approximately $1,633 to smuggle hashish to an inmate. In June 2010, three Afghans and one Pakistani were sentenced to death by Abu Dhabi Criminal Court, in what court officials called Abu Dhabi’s largest heroin case. The men were charged with trafficking 16 kilograms of heroin as well as consuming drugs themselves. In July 2010, Dubai Criminal Court sentenced a British transit traveler to 10 years’ imprisonment for an attempt to smuggle 1.856 kilograms of heroin in his stomach.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

The focus of the UAE's domestic drug awareness program is to reduce demand through public campaigns directed at young people. The UAE has also established rehabilitation centers and several awareness programs, including issuing postage stamps to highlight the hazards of drugs. Every year, the Ministry of Interior holds a high-profile "Drug Awareness Week" with exhibits prominently set up in local shopping malls to coincide with International Anti-Narcotics Day on June 26. To mark the occasion in 2010, Dubai Police held its sixth forum bringing together experts from the Arab region and Western countries. Additionally, Abu Dhabi Police held an exhibition entitled “My Family Happiness. No Drugs” which involved a number of government ministries and the private sector and included contests and brochures. Throughout the year, several UAE organizations launched awareness campaigns directed at youth, including Dubai Police launching in September an anti-drug campaign entitled “A New Person” targeted at school and university students and their parents, and the Dubai Women’s College, with sponsorship from Dubai Bank, hosting an exhibition with workshops and activities to teach students about the dangers of drugs.

In 2003, the UAE's Federal Supreme Court ruled that authorities needed evidence that drug use occurred in the UAE before they could prosecute users. A positive blood test is considered evidence of consumption, but not evidence of where the consumption took place. Anecdotal reporting indicates the majority of UAE drug users take their first doses abroad, primarily because of peer pressure.

In 2008, the Abu Dhabi-based National Rehabilitation Center (NRC) announced that some 600 drug addicts had been rehabilitated over the past six years. 2010 figures published by the NRC show that 35 percent of addicts are between the ages of 17 to 26 years. In 2010, the NRC signed an MOU with UNODC to develop policies and strategies to combat the demand for addictive substances and focus on the adverse social consequences of alcohol and drug use.

The UAE has established an extensive treatment and rehabilitation program for its citizens. There is one rehabilitation center in Abu Dhabi, two in Dubai, and one each in Ajman and Sharjah for those identified as addicts. In May 2010, the NRC opened its first outpatient addiction clinic, which can accommodate 50 new patients each month. In accordance with federal law, UAE nationals who are addicted can present themselves to the police or a rehabilitation center and be exempted from criminal prosecution. Those nationals who do not turn themselves in to local authorities are referred to the legal system for prosecution. Third-country nationals or "guest workers" (who make up approximately 80 percent of the population) generally receive prison sentences upon conviction of narcotics offenses and are deported upon completing their sentences. Most UAE nationals arrested on drug charges are placed in one of the UAE's drug treatment programs. They undergo a two-year drug rehabilitation program, which includes family counseling/therapy.

4. Corruption

The Government of the UAE as a matter of policy does not encourage or facilitate illicit production or distribution of narcotic or psychotropic drugs or other controlled substances or the laundering of proceeds from drug transactions. Senior officials are not known to engage in or facilitate illicit production of these drugs or the laundering of proceeds from drug transactions. There is no evidence that corruption -including narcotics related corruption - of public officials is a systemic problem.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

The first DEA office in the UAE was formally established in October 2006 in Dubai and in addition to the whole of the UAE, this office is also responsible for Oman. DEA officials work with UAE authorities to combat both drug smuggling and drug related money laundering. Since 2006, DEA has been building an active working relationship with their UAE counterparts. The DEA has sponsored training events, tours of DEA facilities in the United States, and seminars attended by their UAE counterparts. In addition, the DEA office has begun inviting UAE authorities to case coordination meetings around the world if the case has UAE links. These actions have led to greater information sharing and cooperation between the DEA and UAE authorities on targeting narcotics traffickers.

The UAE’s geographic position, stable government, and pro-business stance make it vulnerable to money laundering. The UAE has anti-money laundering laws; however, some cash transactions and the hawala informal banking system remain largely unregulated. The UAE is a regional financial center in the Middle East and is strategically important due to its close proximity to Iran, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. In an extremely unstable region, the political and financial stability of the UAE is a great temptation for drug traffickers searching for a safe harbor for their illicit proceeds.

D. Conclusion

The UAEG is aware of the threat to its citizens and residents from drugs and has made significant commitments of both human resources and funding towards building new drug control institutions and conducting law enforcement operations. The United States and the UAE will continue to work together to discourage narcotics trafficking and related financial crimes and to protect citizens from the scourge of drug abuse. Enhanced cooperation on and investigation of transnational trafficking cases and related money laundering and bulk cash smuggling would complement existing U.S.-UAE efforts. The DEA Country Office looks forward to expanding cooperation on narcotics and related financial investigations with UAE authorities.


Uganda

Drug production and trafficking within Uganda remain relatively modest in scope. Production appears to be limited to growing of cannabis for local consumption and regional export to Kenya, Sudan, and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Cannabis cultivation occurs countrywide, and increased during the past year due to expanding regional demand and the lack of more profitable crops. Reports of illegal trafficking of drugs such as heroin and cocaine also increased as traffickers exploited Uganda’s porous borders, increasingly prevalent corruption, and Ugandan law enforcement’s inadequate equipment and training. Traffickers sometimes use Uganda and Entebbe International Airport as a transit route to Europe. Primary sources of drugs include Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Iran. Other reports suggest that South American drugs are also routed through Uganda. There are no national studies on the prevalence and type of drug usage in Uganda, but health care professionals, social workers, and NGOs report that marijuana is the most widely used drug due to its accessibility and relatively low cost.

Comprehensive national drug legislation remains pending in Parliament. If ratified, this legislation would increase criminal penalties for drug traffickers, enhance the government’s authority to confiscate assets, and establish a national coordination body to oversee the treatment and rehabilitation of drug abusers and to manage regional and international counter narcotics cooperation efforts.

Uganda is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1971 UN Convention Against Psychotropic Substances, and the 1961 UN Single Convention as amended by its 1972 Protocol. Uganda is also a party to the UN Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime, as well as the UN Convention Against Corruption. The Ugandan Government does not encourage or facilitate illicit production or distribution of narcotic or psychotropic drugs or other controlled substances, or the laundering of proceeds from illegal drug transactions.

The absence of national crime reporting statistics and corruption within the police and the justice system prevent an accurate accounting of regular law enforcement efforts. In 2010, the Government of Uganda’s Anti-Narcotic Unit (ANU) seized eight kilograms of heroin and five kilograms of cocaine. In 2009, the ANU seized two kilograms of heroin and one kilogram of cocaine. Seizures of cannabis dropped to 894 kilograms in 2010 from 2389 kilograms in 2009. Uganda successfully prosecuted 450 people for drug-related offenses in 2010, and uprooted 25 acres of cannabis plants. Uganda’s capacity to combat illicit drugs is complicated by corruption and severe resource constraints. ANU staffing for 2010 remained flat at 130 people, well short of the estimated 500 officers the ANU says it needs to effectively combat Uganda’s illicit drug trade. However, the ANU plans to train an additional 300 officers in 2011. The effectiveness of the ANU’s two trained drug-sniffing dogs continues to decrease due to a lack of in-service refresher training. Entebbe International Airport has no specialized x-ray machine for detecting ingested drugs, and the ANU has no reliable drug test kits to determine if suspected drugs are in fact prohibited substances.

Uganda does not have an organized campaign to sensitize the public to the dangers of drug abuse. The Ugandan Government operates one rehabilitation center at Butabika Referral Mental Hospital. Additional treatment options are provided by NGOs.

The U.S. regularly engages with the Ugandan Government on a variety of law-enforcement issues to improve Uganda's capacity to enforce its laws and investigate crime. The U.S. has assisted Uganda's counternarcotics efforts with numerous law enforcement training courses and general investigative skills training focusing on major case management and evidence collection. The U.S. is also assisting with a large scale community policing program at the National Police Training Academy. The Ugandan Police Force (UPF) is a willing partner in the fight against narcotics trafficking. However, UPF officers, along with border and airport enforcement officers, are in dire need of additional training, equipment and resources to curb the illegal drug trade. Any improvement in Uganda’s capability to combat the production, trafficking, and consumption of drugs is also dependent on Parliament passing comprehensive national drug legislation and increasing the resources and training for the ANU.


Ukraine

A. Introduction

Ukraine is not a major drug producing country; however, it is located astride several important drug trafficking routes into Western Europe, and thus is an important transit country. Ukraine's numerous ports on the Black and Azov seas, its extensive river transportation routes, its porous northern and eastern borders, and its inadequately financed and under-equipped border and customs agencies make Ukraine an attractive route for drug traffickers into the bordering European Union’s profitable illegal drug market. Narcotics, primarily heroin, move from Afghanistan through Russia, the Caucasus, and Turkey and then pass through Ukraine, destined for Western Europe. New routes for Latin American cocaine are also taking hold, as confirmed by three large seizures in the Odesa sea port in 2010 of 152 kilos of cocaine concealed in deck planks, 1,193 kilos hidden in blast furnaces, and over 582 kilos disguised in metal scrap. The shipments came from ports in Bolivia and Venezuela. But as frequently occurs in transit countries, drug addiction appears to be growing in Ukraine itself. Analysts are almost unanimous in the opinion that Ukraine is increasingly being viewed not only as a transit country, but also as a drug market in its own right.

That said, domestic drug abuse continues to be primarily focused on drugs made from narcotic plants (hemp and poppy) grown in the region, which account for approximately 85 percent of the total drug market in Ukraine. The use of synthetic drugs and psychotropic substances, especially amphetamines, has also been rapidly increasing in Ukraine over the past few years. Most of the major drugs consumed in Ukraine are either produced in Ukraine or supplied from Russia and Moldova (poppy straw, hemp, opium) as well as Poland, Hungary and the Netherlands (amphetamines, methamphetamines, MDMA also known as "Ecstasy").

According to official statistics, the drug addiction level in Ukraine is approximately 34 addicts per 10,000 inhabitants. An interesting sign, however, is a continued drop in the number of registered drug addicts from 178,043 in September 2008 to 165,045 in September 2009 and 156,300 in 2010. This drop in registered drug addicts could be ascribed to the positive interventions of the government, international organizations and local NGOs. However, many experts believe that the number of unregistered drug addicts may in fact be at least twice as large as the number reported as registered, given the social stigma attached to formal registration as an addict, and that the “drop” in registered drug addicts is therefore misleading.

Ukraine is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, and complies with provisions of the Convention in its counter-narcotics legislation

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

Ukraine has well-developed anti-drug legislation consistent with international standards. In 2010, the Government of Ukraine (GOU) continued to implement a comprehensive anti-drug policy. The policy frankly acknowledges the growing scale of drug abuse in Ukraine and the lack of adequate prevention, education and public awareness campaigns, community prevention efforts, and treatment and rehabilitation facilities.

Ukraine’s national drug control policy addresses a wide array of issues, including improvement of legislation; monitoring and prevention; interagency cooperation; development of a modern interagency data bank; increased law enforcement capacity; scientific research into the causes of drug addiction; setting up an interagency lab to research new synthetic drugs and trends; integration in the European information space and exchange of information on drug trafficking; strengthening of drug abuse prevention centers; introduction of new treatment practices; an increase in public awareness and education, especially in schools; further strengthening of law enforcement capacity, and full achievement of international standards. Some of these policy objectives have been adequately addressed, while others were accomplished with only limited success, especially those that required ample funding, but remained underfunded. The estimated funding needed for full implementation of the program is 300 million UAH ($37.5 million); however, this amount was not allocated in the budget.

The GOU has now approved a new government concept program and action plan to address drug abuse and trafficking for 2011-2015. The key goal is to pursue a balanced but persistent policy of wide-scale prevention, control, and enforcement. The program is based on both domestic and international experience. It incorporates certain aspects of the EU Drugs Action Plan for 2009-2012 and recommendations of the Council of Europe’s Pompidou Group.

The GOU has also drafted several amendments to the existing anti-drug laws to impose stricter punishment for drug abuse in public places, and lists some new psychoactive substances (biologically active additives and smoking mixes) as narcotic substances.

The Narcotics Control Committee established in 2003 in the Ministry of Health was converted into an independent agency in 2010. It will continue to monitor the licit production and use of controlled substances by licensed companies and organizations to avoid diversion to illicit uses. The monitoring is also facilitated by the National Drug Observatory. The Observatory was established at the Ministry of Health in 2006, with the assistance of an EU-funded Program, to help collect, analyze and disseminate data on drugs at the national level as well as share and improve comparability of this data at the regional level through the harmonization of key epidemiological and drug supply indicators.

Approximately three years ago, the GOU amended its laws to make illegal the non-prescribed use of strong opiate analogs, like Tramadol, because Ukraine experienced significant problems with uncontrolled production and use of Tramadol. The new legislation allowed a much more effective law enforcement response to this problem. As a result, Tramadol abuse has been reduced sharply. In 2010, the Government further reduced the quota for licensed production of Tramadol in Ukraine and fixed it at the level of 1,900 kilos (a 7.14% drop against 2009). However, there were continued attempts in 2010 to smuggle Tramadol into Ukraine from the bordering countries.

In 2010 the MOI (Ministry of Interior) reformed its drug enforcement branch as part of the wider ministerial reform following the accession of the new government. The central Drug Enforcement Department staff was cut by 35 percent, and 70 percent of management staff in the central and local units were replaced.

Both MOI and SBU (Security Service of the Ukraine) continued to build cooperative counter-narcotics relationships with international counterpart agencies in Western Europe, Eurasia and America. For example, in 2010 two major cocaine seizures were based on intelligence shared by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and one major cocaine seizure was based on intelligence shared by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

Ukraine is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1961 UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs as amended by the 1972 Protocol, and to the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances. The U.S.-Ukraine Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty came into force in February 2001. Ukraine is a party to the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its three protocols. The U.S. and Ukraine signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Law Enforcement Assistance in December 2002. This memorandum provided for State Department-funded (INL) assistance to Ukraine to help the GOU bring its law enforcement institutions, including those involved in the effort against narcotic drugs, up to European and international standards. The goal of this assistance program is to facilitate Ukraine’s accession to Euro-Atlantic institutions such as the European Union. It has been amended regularly since 2002 to add funding and establish justice sector and law enforcement projects as agreed by Ukraine and the U.S.

2. Supply Reduction

Poppy straw and hemp are produced and consumed locally with the surplus exported to Russia, Belarus and Moldova. Conversely, these drugs are also trafficked into Ukraine from Russia and Moldova, an indication of the porous nature of the borders. Opium poppy is grown predominantly in western, southwestern, and northern Ukraine, while hemp cultivation is concentrated in the eastern and southern parts of the country. Poppy and cannabis are controlled plants and can be grown only by licensed farms. The Government approves cultivation quotas every year. Despite the prohibition of unauthorized cultivation, many cases of illegal cultivation in small quantities by private households are discovered. The MOI Drug Enforcement Department identified 5,700 illegal plantations of poppy and cannabis in 2010, and 3,042 criminal and 1,155 administrative cases (depending on the size of plantations) were brought against individuals. The police used small aircraft for the first time this year to expand the monitored areas.

Ukraine is predominantly a destination country for poppy straw, hemp and methamphetamine, and a transit country for heroin. Heroin is trafficked from Central Asia (primarily Afghanistan) and comes into Ukraine mostly through Russia, the Caucasus, and Turkey. Shipments are usually destined for Western Europe, and arrive by road, rail, or sea, which is perceived as less risky than air or mail shipment and permits traffickers to move larger quantities of narcotics.

In several recent years, experts have noted an increase in heroin traffic from Turkey into Ukraine by sea, or into Russia and then into Ukraine across its south-eastern border, and further by land across Ukraine’s western border into Western Europe. Experts believe that traditional Balkan drug traffic routes have become saturated and criminals are looking for new trafficking channels. Drug traffic from Asia is controlled by well-organized international criminal groups of Afghan, Pakistani, and Tajik origin that use citizens of the former Soviet republics as drug couriers.

There are signs of increasing attempts by Latin American drug dealers to develop cocaine smuggling channels into Ukraine and use it as a destination and transit point on the way to Western Europe and former Soviet countries. Three large seizures at the Odesa sea port this year included 152 kilograms of cocaine concealed in deck planks, 1,193 kilograms (approximate value $180 million) hidden in blast furnaces, and over 582.3 kilograms hidden among metal scrap. The shipments came from ports in Bolivia and Venezuela.

Two Ukrainian sailors were sentenced in Venezuela for cocaine trafficking in 2010. They worked on a vessel that carried drugs although they maintained that they were unaware of what was in the shipment. However, this indication of involvement of Ukrainian ships’ crew in trafficking from Latin America could indicate a future problem, given that many Ukrainian sailors work on private contracts overseas that may involve risky or dubious activities.

The trafficking of synthetic drugs and psychotropic substances is also growing, especially from Poland. Criminal groups of mixed origin (Ukrainians, Polish, Belarusians and Russians) that formed in the 1990s and traditionally stayed away from drug trafficking are increasingly taking up this lucrative niche. The price of these drugs is lower than that of heroin and cocaine and therefore the drugs are attractive to young addicts. Domestic production of synthetic drugs in undercover labs is also a steady trend despite persistent eradication efforts by law enforcement agencies.

The responsibility for counter-narcotics enforcement in Ukraine is shared by the MOI, with its primarily domestic law enforcement function, and the SBU, which deals with trans-border aspects of drug trafficking. The State Border Guard Service (SBGS) and the State Customs Service (SCS) interdict drugs along the border and at ports of entry.

In 2010, the MOI’s police force seized approximately 11.6 tons of various drugs (2.3% increase over 2009), including 10.5 tons of drugs made of narcotic plants, 6.9 kilos of heroin, 2.2 kilos of cocaine and 52,3 kilos of amphetamines. It eliminated 230 clandestine labs and some 2,100 small-scale drug making labs. Police also seized 950,900 doses of diverted controlled medical drugs.

The SBU seized 7,471.2 kilos of drugs and raw narcotic material, including 2.3 kilos of heroin, 1,964 kilos of cocaine, 1.9 kilos of synthetic drugs and 64.3 kilos of various psychotropic substances and 405.6 kilos of precursors. It eliminated 6 drug labs. The largest volume of seizures by both the MOI and Security Service was opium straw.

The Ukrainian police force investigated 2,600 narcotic crimes in 2010. The Security Service investigated 762 drug crimes (through September).

Ukrainian border and customs authorities report an increasingly successful utilization of risk and criminal analysis in intercepting drugs, particularly those trafficked in shipments arriving to Ukrainian ports.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

This is the second year in a row that the number of registered drug addicts in Ukraine dropped. In 2010, there were 156,300 registered addicts as opposed to 165,045 in 2009. Although potentially a good sign, various experts estimate that the total number of actual drug addicts in Ukraine range from 300,000 to 500,000, making the decrease in registered drug addicts potentially misleading. Traditionally, the southern and eastern regions of Ukraine rate the highest in terms of drug addiction (on average 70 addicts per 10,000 individuals in contrast to 34 addicts per 10,000 individuals on average across the country). Drug-related deaths over the last few years have averaged 1,000 per year, according to Ukrainian health authorities.

Marijuana and hashish is growing in popularity with young people, but opium straw extract remains the drug of choice for Ukrainian addicts. The popularity of this drug is due to its low cost ($5–8 per 1 ml dose) and simple production methods. The use of synthetic drugs is also on the rise with young people, in particular. Examples of drugs abused are: ephedrine, ecstasy (MDMA), LSD, amphetamines and methamphetamines. The spread of synthetic drugs is exacerbated by the rapid growth in local production. Hard drugs, such as cocaine and heroin, are still too expensive for most Ukrainian drug users. In recent years, Ukraine has also seen the growing illegal use of the legal, but restricted, prescription opiate analog, Tramadol, but has responded by making Tramadol a prescription drug and subjecting sales of Tramadol pills to stricter supervision by the government.

Government law enforcement agencies are developing stronger partnership ties with NGOs and media in order to fully engage their capacities in drug prevention. Some local MOI departments host community supervisory boards which include both law enforcement officers and community, NGO and media representatives and act as local public forums to discuss pressing needs in drug prevention and enforcement. Police also participate in the “Drug Free Life” program aimed at raising public awareness of drug abuse problems, especially among young people.

Ukraine’s drug problem today is increasingly characterized by a rapidly growing HIV/AIDS-infected population in which intravenous drug use is the primary mode of transmission of HIV, through behaviors such as syringe sharing. The World Health Organization, UN Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and UNAIDS have recommended that substitution maintenance treatment programs with methadone and buprenorphine be integrated into national HIV/AIDS programs in order to avoid needle sharing and to support access to and adherence to antiretroviral treatment and medical follow up. Since 2004, the GOU has implemented pilot substitution maintenance treatment programs using buprenorphine. The GOU has committed through its Global Fund Round 6 Grant to incorporate methadone, a significantly less expensive and comparably effective opiate substitute, into substitution maintenance treatment programs. Fully incorporating methadone into its national HIV/AIDS program is critical to curbing Ukraine’s burgeoning HIV/AIDS epidemic. Starting in June 2008, the Ministry of Health began a methadone substitution program available to approximately 2,000 individuals, half of whom are HIV positive. It is expected that the methadone maintenance therapy will treat up to 20,000 addicts in 111 clinics countrywide by 2013. However, many opponents criticize the substitution program as a legal bypass for yet another type of drug.

Many NGOs argue that legal drugs require more stringent controls by the government. Law enforcement agencies note a serious increase in the illegal use of diverted methadone. By mid 2010 they had uncovered 173 attempts of divert licit methadone. There were several reports of methadone seizures in relatively small quantities from individuals on the border.

4. Corruption

The GOU openly acknowledges that corruption remains a major problem in society, due to the existence of a bribe-tolerant mentality, and the lack of law enforcement capabilities to investigate and prosecute corruption. Both the previous and the new government have declared the commitment to strengthen the investigation and prosecution of corruption. However, the pace of anti-corruption reform remains slow and the number of successful prosecutions of corruption cases (including those related to narcotics) is meager.

As a matter of government policy the GOU does not encourage or facilitate illicit production or distribution of narcotic or psychotropic drugs or other controlled substances, or the laundering of proceeds from illegal drug transactions. The Prosecutor General’s Office reported 40 cases brought against 52 law enforcement officers and other civil servants in 2010 in relation to drug-related corruption offences. According to judicial authorities, Ukrainian courts heard 14,844 narcotic related criminal cases and sentenced 12,635 individuals, of which only seven were civil servants (first half of 2010). Ukraine is a party to the UN Convention against Corruption.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

The U.S. narcotics policy objective is to help Ukraine bring its law enforcement and justice sector institutions up to European and internationally accepted norms and standards, facilitating Ukraine’s integration into Euro-Atlantic institutions. This will in turn assist Ukrainian authorities to build law enforcement capacity and develop effective counter-narcotics programs in interdiction (particularly of hard drugs transiting the country), investigation, and demand reduction, as well as to assist Ukraine in countering money laundering. Officers from the DEA have conducted a number of training courses funded by the Department of State in the areas of drug interdiction at seaports and advanced drug investigation techniques. The DEA has established a good working relationship with both the MOI and SBU, and training programs have helped deepen these relationships. Similarly, the United States Coast Guard provided training in maritime boarding officer techniques, creating a basis for future cooperation..

The Department of State, through a variety of projects, also assists the MOI to build capacity while simultaneously strengthening the Ukrainian SBGS capability to control Ukraine’s borders. Department of State funded projects include helping the SBGS develop risk and criminal analysis capabilities that are compliant with European Union norms in order to more accurately target and suppress threats, including narcotics trafficking, along its approximately 7,000 km-long border. In addition, the USG has provided a wide range of equipment to the SBGS and SCS, including video and electronic border monitoring systems, which should enhance these services’ ability to detect narcotics smuggling. DoD, through the U.S. European Command, has also furnished equipment to the Ministry of Internal Affairs. Finally the State Department is supporting the Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, Moldova (GUAM) international organization, particularly through a virtual law enforcement center which will facilitate counter-narcotics information sharing between member states law enforcement bodies.

D. Conclusion

Combating illegal narcotics remains a national priority for Ukraine. Ukraine’s anti-drug legislation is well developed and the GOU is committed to keeping it current with the evolving threats. The Ukrainian Government attaches great importance to the prevention of narcotic addiction, but efforts in this area oftentimes prove to be under-funded. Coordination between law enforcement agencies responsible for counter-narcotics occurs, but continues to be hampered due to regulatory and jurisdictional constraints

Official statistics show a slight decrease in the number of drug related crimes and registered addicts in 2010, but these may not be accurate nor significant decreases. Trafficking of narcotics from Asia and cocaine from Latin America to European destinations through Ukraine is on the upswing as drug traffickers look for new ways to circumvent Western European customs and border controls. The seizure in the Odessa sea port noted above confirms this trend. Synthetic drugs trafficked from countries of Eastern Europe or produced locally are also a growing concern. Demand reduction and treatment of drug abusers remains a challenge requiring close attention. However, the largest challenge remains the limited budget resources to fund law enforcement efforts to investigate and interdict sophisticated, international trafficking rings that see Ukraine as a transit point to lucrative Western European markets, especially for heroin and cocaine. The U.S. will continue to have a role to play in Ukraine beyond law enforcement coordination, helping the government build its counter-narcotics capacity.


United Kingdom

A. Introduction

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (UK) is a consumer country of illicit drugs. Like other developed nations, the UK faces a serious domestic drug problem. Crime syndicates from around the world exploit the underground narcotics market and use the UK as a transshipping route. Many foreign nationals and British nationals use ethnic ties to countries where drugs originate to traffic and to distribute drugs. More than 90 percent of the heroin sold in the UK is derived from Afghan opium that transits Iran, Pakistan, Turkey, and the Balkans. The UK is an active U.S. partner on counternarcotics operations in Afghanistan.

Cannabis is the most widely used drug in the UK, and the cannabis market is sizeable, with much of the sinsemilla, or “skunk,” high THC-content marijuana grown domestically. Because the supply of cannabis can be profitable, organized criminals engage in cannabis commerce to fund other illicit activities.

The Home Office reported that drug use in the UK in recent years was at its lowest level in more than a decade. The UK has a robust drug-control institutional capability and strictly enforces national precursor chemical legislation in compliance with EU regulations. The UK is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

A key piece of counternarcotics legislation is the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 and its Regulations. The 1971 Act identifies those drugs that are “dangerous or otherwise harmful” – referred to as “controlled drugs” – and proscribes their unlawful possession, supply and production. Controlled drugs are classified in one of three categories – Class A, B or C – according to how harmful they are considered to be either to the individual or to society generally.

Class A drugs include cocaine, ecstasy, LSD, magic mushrooms, heroin, methadone and methamphetamine. Amphetamines can be either Class A or B, depending on whether they are injected or swallowed. Class C drugs include tranquillizers, some painkillers, anabolic steroids, and Ketamine.

In 2007, the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD) examined new evidence regarding the reclassification of cannabis. The Government decided to upgrade cannabis to a Class B drug against the ACMD’s recommendation that the existing classification as a Class C drug should be maintained. In January 2009, cannabis was re-classified from Class C to Class B, and in December 2009 synthetic cannabinoids such as “spice” were also classified as Class B drugs.

The UK’s coalition government intends to place temporary bans on “legal high” drugs and has asked independent experts to weigh in on the health issues associated with use of these types of drugs in order to determine whether a permanent ban is appropriate. Formerly “legal high” drugs Naphyrone (also called NRG1) and mephedrone were classified as Class B drugs earlier IN 2010.

On December 8, 2010, the government released its new comprehensive drug strategy entitled, “Drug Strategy 2010—Reducing Demand, Restricting Supply, Building Recovery—Supporting People to Live a Drug Free Life. There are four broad themes in the government’s new drug strategy: 1) prevent drug use; 2) strengthen enforcement, criminal justice and legal framework; 3) rebalance treatment to support drug free outcomes; and 4) support recovery to break the cycle of drug addiction. With the new strategy, the Home Office aims to have a more holistic approach to tackling drug misuse as well as other issues such as alcohol abuse or mental health issues and looks to devolve responsibility and budgets to local authorities where possible. The strategy emphasizes outcome-based funding streams and reducing the costs of drug misuse.

The coalition government also published a National Security Strategy in October that identified transnational organized crime, which includes drug trafficking, as a priority. The Serious Organized Crime Agency (SOCA) is the current lead agency that tackles drug trafficking and drug-related crime. In July 2010, the Home Secretary released the government’s plans, in a document entitled Policing in the 21st Century, to absorb SOCA into a National Crime Agency in an effort to address these issues at the national level. The changes set forth in the Home Secretary’s plan will not be implemented until after 2012.

The UK is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1961 UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs as amended by the 1972 Protocol, and the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances. The UK is also a party to the UN Corruption Convention and the UN Convention against Transnational Organized crime and its protocols against trafficking in persons and migrant smuggling. The U.S. and the UK have an extradition treaty, Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT), and a narcotics agreement, which the UK has extended to some of its territories. In February 2010 the US-UK Instruments implementing the US-EU Extradition Agreement and MLAT entered into force.

The U.S. and the UK also have a judicial narcotics agreement and an MLAT relating to some UK territories such as the Cayman Islands, Anguilla, the British Virgin Islands, Montserrat, and the Turks and Caicos Islands. The U.S.-UK Customs Mutual Assistance Agreement (CMAA) dates from 1989. In April 2008, the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) and the Royal Navy signed a memorandum of understanding to cooperate on issues of maritime security. In 2005, the UK signed an updated USCG Law Enforcement Detachment (LEDET) Memorandum of Understanding with the USG. This includes the airborne use of force (AUF) capability on Royal Navy and auxiliary vessels attempting to stop noncompliant drug smuggling go-fast vessels as well as expanding the authorization to carry out LEDETs in waters beyond the Caribbean and Bermudan areas of operations subject to the consent of both parties. In FY 2008, USCG LEDETs (Law Enforcement Detachments) deployed on British ships removed over 22,280 pounds of cocaine. The deployment of Royal Navy assets to the drug transit zone remains vital to ensuring continued success; however, the Strategic Defense and Security Review (SDSR), released in October, included significant cuts to Royal Navy personnel and vessels which may reduce operational capacity.

The Drugs Act of 2005 strengthened police powers in drug enforcement. The law allows for drug tests on arrest, rather than on charge, and requires persons with a positive test to undergo further assessment. The Government also amended the Anti-Social Behavior Act of 2003 to allow authorities to enter a suspected crack house to issue a closure notice. Under provisions of the Act, “magic mushrooms” were upgraded to Class A Drugs in 2005. Laws that took effect in 2000 required courts to weigh a positive Class A test result when deciding bail, which may be denied or restricted if an offender refuses a test or refuses treatment after a positive test. The testing requirement is also applied to offenders serving community sentences and those on parole. A Drug Rehabilitation Requirement (DRR) is one of the 12 requirements that can be included in a community sentence. UK courts can direct Community Sentences with DRRs instead of a criminal charge requiring prison, offering courts an alternative tool for tackling persistent drug offenders.

The UK is a member of the Dublin Group, a group of countries that coordinate the provision of counternarcotics assistance, the Council of Europe’s Pompidou Group, Europol, the Financial Action Task Force, and is a UNODC donor. Britain is also a charter member of the Maritime Analysis and Operations Center-Narcotics (MAOC-N) in Lisbon, which aims to bolster EU capacity to protect its southwestern flank by enhancing police and intelligence cooperation amongst its members.

2. Supply Reduction

Cocaine was the most commonly seized Class A drug followed by heroin. The total number of drug seizures in 2009/2010 decreased by seven percent in England and Wales. The average purity of cocaine seized by the UK Border Agency in 2009/2010 increased slightly from 2008/2009, while the purity of cocaine seized by the police fell from 27 percent in 2008/2009 to 21 percent in 2009/2010. The difference in purity indicates that cocaine is being diluted or “cut” after importation with street purity hitting an all time low of 20 percent in March 2009.

In Northern Ireland, the police reported 3319 drug seizure incidents, an increase of 3.8 percent over last year, with an estimated street value of GBP 5,545,480 (approximately $8,872,768). Cannabis was the most commonly seized drug, and herbal cannabis seizure incidents increased by 59.9 percent compared to last year’s figures.

According to Home Office reports, domestic cultivation of cannabis was first identified in mid-2004, and from 2004 to 2007 over 2000 cannabis grow sites were discovered in the UK, predominantly run by Vietnamese criminals. Over 70 more were discovered in Scotland. Authorities destroyed domestic marijuana crops and clandestine grow facilities as they were detected. Traditionally, cannabis was cultivated overseas and then imported into the UK from Europe in bulk by serious organized criminals. Hashish continues to come to the UK primarily from Morocco.

A new focus with political implications for the coalition government was khat, a plant whose fresh leaves and tops are chewed or, less frequently, dried and consumed as tea, as a euphoric stimulant. Khat was imported to the UK from East African nations, the Middle East, and Yemen and was not a controlled substance in the UK; however, its stimulant components, cathine and cathinone, are Class C controlled substances. Estimates for 2006 place khat importation levels to the UK at approximately 120 tons per month, and khat use among adults was 0.2 percent, according to the British Crime Survey in 2009/10. Several areas in the U.S. have been identified as areas of increased khat commerce and use, and DEA has identified several links between U.S. khat seizures and the UK. In October, the Home Office published a report on the perceptions of social harms associated with khat use. One of the key implications of the report was that focus group participants generally supported some level of government regulation of importation, distribution, and the availability of treatment services for khat users.

Synthetic drugs continued to originate from Western and Central Europe; amphetamines, ecstasy, and LSD were mainly traced to sources in Belgium, the Netherlands, and Poland, with some supplies originating in the UK. Tablet making sites have been found in the north of England, and many tablet makers rely heavily on precursor chemicals made in China and India. The UK remains one of the largest consumer markets for Netherlands-sourced ecstasy. The UK government made the “date rape” drug gamma-Hydroxybutyric acid (GHB) illegal in 2003, and gamma-Butyrolactone (GBL), a close chemical equivalent of GHB, in December 2009. The Misuse of Drugs Act also classified Benzylpiperazine (BZP), a popular club scene drug, as illegal at that time.

In recent years, UK authorities have seized several small clandestine methamphetamine laboratories in the country and law enforcement bodies have started to embrace awareness training and strategic planning. Methamphetamine use in the UK is low compared to other Class A drugs.

Steady supplies of heroin and cocaine entered the UK during 2009-2010. Approximately 90 percent of heroin in the UK came from Afghanistan. The primary heroin trafficking route to the UK is overland from Afghanistan to Europe, transiting Iran and Turkey. UK-based criminal groups with ties to Turkey handle a significant amount of the heroin eventually imported into the UK, although criminals in the Netherlands and Belgium also channel heroin to the UK from Turkey. Traffickers with ties to Pakistan also play a significant part; most of the heroin they import, normally in small amounts by air couriers traveling directly from Pakistan, is destined for British cities with large South Asian populations.

While traffickers with connections to Turkey continued to dominate the supply of heroin to the UK, some heroin originated from Southeast Asia. Drug traffickers with connections to the Caribbean were also involved in the supply and distribution of heroin and cocaine. The heroin found in the UK continues to be smuggled through ports in the southeast, although some amounts of heroin arrived through major UK airports with links to Turkey, Northern Cyprus, and Pakistan. The purity of heroin seized by UK Border Authority and police increased in 2009/2010. Heroin tainted with anthrax caused five deaths in Glasgow, Scotland in January.

Supplies of cocaine reached the UK market in a variety of ways. The main method of moving cocaine from South America to Europe was in bulk maritime shipments on merchant vessels and yachts from Colombian and Venezuelan ports to Spain, Netherlands, and Belgium. Importation of small quantities was becoming more frequent and may indicate a trend towards ‘little and often’ importations. Around 75 percent of cocaine was thought to be carried across the English Channel from consignments shipped from Colombia to continental Europe and then brought to the UK concealed in trucks or private cars or by human couriers or “mules.” Traffickers based in South America, Mexico, Spain, and the UK organized this smuggling. There was increasing evidence that a significant amount of the cocaine smuggled into the UK came from West Africa in container traffic or by air couriers. Crack cocaine was rarely imported, but was produced in the UK from cocaine powder.

The Caribbean was a major transshipment point for cocaine to the UK from Colombia and Venezuela. Cocaine came by both airfreight and by couriers who attempted to conceal internally by swallowing protective bags with 0.5 kg to 1 kg at a time. Over the past five years, the purity of cocaine and crack at the street level has fallen. Purity fell in England from 55 percent in 2001 to around 20 percent in March 2009. Cocaine purity in Scotland was about half that of England and Wales, suggesting that it originated in England and was then re-cut. In Northern Ireland cocaine was even less pure. Cocaine related deaths were reported in Northern Ireland for the first time in 2007.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

UK counternarcotics policies have a strong social component, reflecting the widely held view that drug problems do not occur in isolation, but are often linked to other social problems. Home Office figures for England and Wales, compiled as part of the 2009/10 British Crime Survey (BCS), indicated that there has been a decline in illicit drug use between 2008/9 and 2009/10. Despite decreased use, cannabis remained the most-used illicit drug in the UK, predominantly in the 16-24 age group. Powder cocaine was the next most commonly used drug, closely followed by ecstasy, amyl nitrate and amphetamines.

Virtually all parts of the UK, including many rural areas, confronted the problem of drug addiction at least to some degree. The BCS estimated nearly 2.2 million adults, or nearly one in fifteen adults, in England and Wales used cannabis this year. The most commonly reported age for first trying cannabis was 16 years old and 18 years old for powder cocaine use. Lifestyle factors such as increased patronage of nightclubs and pubs, increased alcohol consumption, and being single had clear relationships with an increased drug use, according to the BCS. Since 1996, men in England and Wales have consistently reported higher levels of drug use than women. In 2008 in Scotland, 574 drug-related deaths were reported, and a mephedrone-related death was reported by the UK media in January 2010.

Class A drug use decreased from last year’s 3.7 percent to 3.1 percent, making 2010 figures more in line with 1996 levels. Overall use of any illicit drug by 16-59 year-olds in the last year has shown an overall decrease from 11.1 percent in 1996 to 8.6 percent, due in part to successive declines in the use of cannabis over the last decade.

In recent years, the cannabis market in the UK, which used to be the largest in Europe, has seen a clear downward trend. In England and Wales cannabis use fell from a prevalence rate of 10.9 percent among the population aged 16-59 in 2002/03 to 6.6 percent in 2009/10. Annual prevalence of cannabis use among people aged 16-24 fell from 28.2 percent in 1998 to 16.1 percent in 2009/10.

In 2009/10, 7.3 percent of 16-24 year-olds reported use of any Class A drug in the past year. This figure was lower than the previous year’s rate of 8.1 percent, but was not statistically significant according to the BCS. Frequent use of any illicit drugs among all 16 to 24 year-olds decreased from 11.6 percent in 2002/03 to 7.3 percent in 2009/10. Police recorded that drug possession offenses decreased by four percent in 2009/10 compared with 2008/09. Possession of cannabis offenses accounted for 69 percent of all recorded drug offenses and increased 90 percent from 2004/05 to 2009/10.

The Home Office estimates that there are 400,000 problem drug users in England, with about 156,000 using injectable drugs. The UK government’s demand-reduction efforts focus on school and other community-based programs to educate young people and to prevent them from starting to use drugs. In 2003, the government launched a national helpline/website through a multimedia drug awareness campaign called “FRANK.” The FRANK helpline offers advice to anyone who may be affected by drugs. Since its inception, FRANK has received over two million calls to its helpline and averaged over 500,000 hits per year on its website.

The UK has drug education programs in all schools, supported by a certificate program for teachers. In 2005, the Department for Education linked FRANK to its “Every Child Matters” education programs to assure regular reviews for effectiveness. A similar information and support program called “Know the Score” operates in Scotland. “Positive Futures,” a sports-based program started in 2000 specifically to target socially vulnerable young people, has served over 80,000 young people since its inception with 91 projects established in regions throughout the country. The program is managed by the national charity, Catch22, but funded by the Home Office. The charity hopes to use the heightened interest in sports generated by London’s hosting of the 2012 Olympics to promote its agenda.

The UK has rapidly expanded treatment services and met its target of doubling the number of drug users in treatment in 2009, two years ahead of schedule. Current figures show that over 210,000 people were now receiving treatment. The so-called “pooled treatment budget” administered by the Home Office and the Department of Health was targeted to increase from $636.8 million (GBP 398 million) nationally in 2008/09 to $649.6 million (406 million GBP) in 2009/2010.

According to the National Treatment Agency for Substance Misuse (NTA) there were approximately 10,000 registered drug treatment workers as of 2008. The NTA estimates the average waiting time for treatment at under one week for the first intervention in 2009/2010, which is a decrease from the average time of nine weeks in 2001. Additional treatment services are provided through the National Health Service.

Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnerships (CDRPs) were established under the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 and are, in most cases, coterminous with local authority areas. They include representatives from police, health, probation and other local agencies and provide strategies for reducing crime in the area. Recorded crime figures for seven key offenses for each CDRP are published on the Home Office website annually.

As the UK prepares to host the Olympic Games in 2012 and the Glasgow Commonwealth Games in 2014, there will be increasing international focus on its anti-doping policies and programs. The Government has designed a strategy to work with key agencies, including the National Anti-Doping Organization, to respond to doping allegations.

4. Corruption

The UK does not encourage or facilitate illicit production or distribution of narcotic or psychotropic drugs or other controlled substances, or the laundering of proceeds from illegal drug transactions. No senior government officials engaged in such activity.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

The UK places a high priority on counternarcotics enforcement and enjoys excellent law enforcement cooperation with the United States. The UK honors U.S. asset seizure requests and was one of the first countries to enforce U.S. civil forfeiture judgments. The UK provides Royal Navy warships and auxiliary vessels under the tactical control of Joint Interagency Task Force South to support efforts to stop the flow of narcotics in the West Atlantic, the Caribbean and Eastern Pacific high seas. A Royal Navy Liaison Officer, seconded to the JIATF South staff, also assists in coordinating UK support to JIATF South counternarcotics operations.

The Joint Narcotics Analysis Center (JNAC), a joint U.S.-UK interagency intelligence fusion center, conducts strategic analysis, studies on the effects of the narcotic trade on governance and security in Afghanistan, and provides support to the Interagency Operations and Coordination Center (IOCC) in Kabul.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s London Country Office works closely with the Serious Organized Crime Agency (SOCA) to fight international drug trafficking, and SOCA has representatives working around the United States in tandem with U.S. officials. The DEA London Office also coordinates efforts on international investigations with other law enforcement agencies located throughout the UK.

D. Conclusion

The government estimates that 60 to 80 tons of cocaine and heroin would need to be imported into the UK annually to meet domestic demand. The UK thus continues to be – in absolute numbers – Europe’s largest cocaine market, with its second highest cocaine use prevalence rate.

Trafficking in heroin and cocaine continue to pose a significant challenge to the UK. The Home Office estimates that the social harm caused by Class A drugs is approximately £13 billion ($20.8 billion) a year.

Despite the government’s robust efforts to combat drug trafficking and associated drug-related crime, the UK continues to be one of the most lucrative markets in the world for traffickers in Class A drugs and was targeted by a wide range of large-scale serious organized criminals. London, Birmingham, and Liverpool were known by UK law enforcement officials to be significant centers for the distribution of all types of drugs.

The way ahead for the UK to curb drug supply and domestic demand will largely depend on how it plans to allocate resources in accordance with the UK’s new drug strategy and how the Coalition government reorganizes SOCA. Budget cuts at UK Border Authority and the Home Office may impact the UK’s ability to tackle its domestic drug problem and may limit its ability to contribute to international operations. The United States will continue to cooperate closely with the UK on all counternarcotics fronts.


Uruguay

A. Introduction

Uruguay is not a major narcotics producing country, although drug traffickers, attracted to Uruguay’s strategic maritime location, take advantage of porous borders with Argentina and Brazil to transit illegal substances through the country. Local consumption of the highly addictive and inexpensive cocaine base product known as “pasta base” remains a problem. Efforts to fight trafficking and domestic consumption are relatively effective, although law enforcement agencies and drug programs have limited resources.

Uruguay is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

In 2010, Uruguay continued to implement its four-year National Plan Against Drug Trafficking and Money Laundering, which included the coordination of state resources to support an inter-agency governing body. Special courts for organized crime, created in 2009, continued to operate in 2010, and they handled all cases related to drug trafficking, money laundering, corruption, and banking fraud, as well as trafficking in persons. In June 2010, the House of Representatives formed a special committee on drug addiction and its societal impact; it will issue reports directly to the National Anti -Drug Secretariat. The National Drug Police (DGRTID) reported increased financial support from the Government of Uruguay (GOU) in 2010. Newly enacted asset forfeiture legislation led to $200,000 being frozen and several prosecutions stemming from Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs).

Uruguay is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention; the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances; the 1961 UN Single Convention as amended by the 1972 Protocol; the Inter-American Convention Against Corruption; the Inter-American Convention Against Terrorism; the Inter-American Convention Against Trafficking in Illegal Firearms; the UN Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime and its three Protocols; and the UN Convention against Corruption. It is also a member of the OAS Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD). The United States and Uruguay are parties to an extradition treaty that entered into force in 1984, a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty that entered into force in 1994, and a Letter of Agreement through which the USG funds counternarcotics and law enforcement programs. Uruguay has also signed drug-related bilateral agreements with Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Bolivia, Chile, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Venezuela and Romania. Uruguay is a member of the regional financial action task force Grupo de Accion Financiera de Sudamerica (GAFISUD).

2. Supply Reduction

Drug trafficking to and through Uruguay has steadily increased over the past several years as drug traffickers from Argentina, Colombia, Bolivia, Peru and Mexico capitalize on its readily exploitable infrastructure. According to GOU policies, shipping containers transiting to or from other MERCOSUR countries are rarely inspected. The vast majority of cocaine shipments enters Uruguay overland, or via small aircraft, and is taken to staging areas before departing the country via maritime shipping concealed in containerized cargo. Colombian and Bolivian traffickers continue to smuggle cocaine into Uruguay -- flying directly from Bolivia into remote northern regions in Uruguay and using make-shift airstrips located on foreign-owned residential farms. Growth in drug trafficking is evidenced by several seizures of multi-hundred kilogram quantities of cocaine since 2006.

The DGRTID seized 323 kilograms (kg) of cocaine in 2010 in both national and multi-jurisdictional counternarcotics operations involving the governments of Argentina, Brazil and Spain. In addition, the DGRTID seized 169 kg of cocaine base, similar to its seizure amounts from 2009; and 336 kg of marijuana, down from 547 kg in 2009. Uruguay’s northern frontier region continues to experience incursions from small aircraft transporting cocaine from Bolivia, as shown by a significant seizure of 176 kg of cocaine on March 31, 2010.

In April 2010, Uruguayan authorities demonstrated resolve in meeting international counter-drug agreements by arresting a Colombian wanted in the United States on drug trafficking charges while he vacationed in Uruguay. In October 2010 the DGRTID seized 25 kilos of cocaine and arrested four Colombian traffickers attempting to attach cocaine capsules to the bottom of unsuspecting cargo ships en route to Europe using specialized underwater equipment. While this technique is not new, it was the first known occurrence in Uruguay. The DGRTID’s swift interdiction and arrest in this case represented an important public step in the fight against drugs.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

Demand reduction continues to be a priority for the GOU and focus is placed on prevention programs, rehabilitation, and treatment, especially for consumers of cocaine base. However, resources are limited and rehabilitation and treatment centers only reach a small portion of drug addicts. The National Drug Rehabilitation Center trains health care professionals and sponsors teacher training, public outreach, and other programs in community centers and clubs. The National Anti-Drug Secretariat trains educators to run an anti-drug program for adolescents in schools across the country. The interagency treatment and prevention program “Portal Amarillo” continued to serve as a primary outlet for addicts seeking help. Portal Amarillo features drug rehabilitation clinics and a hotline, as well as services for both in-patient and out-patient drug users in northern Montevideo and in the Department of Maldonado. In March 2010 a new government-run drug rehabilitation clinic “Casa Abierta” opened in the northern region of the country and operates similarly to Portal Amarillo. In a specialized program targeting prison populations, prison personnel and inmates were trained to develop, plan, and perform activities to reduce drug abuse.

Uruguay continues to develop methods to track trends in drug use. According to the United Nations World Drug Report 2010, 6 percent of the Uruguayan population between the ages of 12 - 65 consumes marijuana on a regular basis while 1.4 percent of the same demographic consumes cocaine. In October 2010 the National Anti-Drug Secretariat published results of a 2009 survey of drug use in students. The survey results highlighted the high use of alcohol and tobacco among secondary students. A survey of drug use in the general population began in 2010 but results are not expected until 2011. The findings of both studies will shape future demand reduction programs.

4. Corruption

As a matter of policy, the Government of Uruguay does not encourage or facilitate illegal activity associated with drug trafficking and there is no evidence to suggest senior government officials are engaged in such activity. Uruguay has taken legislative and law enforcement measures to prevent and punish public corruption as related to narcotics production, processing, and shipment. Corruption cases are under the jurisdiction of the organized crime courts. The GOU Transparency Law of 1998 criminalizes various abuses of power by government authorities and requires high-ranking officials to comply with financial disclosure regulations. Public officials who do not act on knowledge of a drug-related crime may be charged with a “crime of omission” under the Citizen Security Law. There were no known corruption cases in 2010.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

U.S. goals in Uruguay are to strengthen its technical and operational ability to interdict narcotics, conduct complex criminal investigations, and arrest traffickers, as well as to strengthen GOU rehabilitation and prevention programs to reduce and prevent the consumption of illegal drugs, and to assist with the reinsertion of addicts into society.

In 2010, U.S. assistance included support to demand reduction programs and narcotics interdiction operations including provision of equipment and police training. The DGRTID received USG support to purchase equipment to enhance its analytical abilities to detect and arrest drug traffickers. The equipment facilitates information sharing between DGRTID and its counterpart USG agencies that assist Uruguay in its counternarcotics strategy. The National Anti-Drug Secretariat received support to conduct a National Drug Use Survey. The goal of this project is to expand the GOU’s awareness of countrywide drug abuse in order to better shape demand reduction strategies. Additionally, the Uruguayan Navy received training in maritime law enforcement, port security, leadership, and search and rescue. The Navy also participated in a Regional Small Boat Maintenance course in Argentina.

D. Conclusion

Uruguay’s institutional mechanisms, including the National Plan Against Drug Trafficking and Money Laundering and its new system of organized crime courts, provide a solid foundation to combat drug trafficking. However, Uruguay needs to provide more support for police efforts to investigate and interdict narcotics shipments, including increased training and technology for border police in the northern region to help stem the inflow of drugs overland from Argentina and Brazil. Uruguay has several dedicated demand reduction programs, and needs to continue reaching out to youth and at risk groups. Improved profiling and inspection of containerized cargo would significantly reduce foreign traffickers ability to move shipments anonymously through Uruguay and serve to make Uruguay a less attractive transit point in the Southern Cone.


Uzbekistan

A. Introduction

While Uzbekistan is not a significant producer of drugs, it sits astride a major trafficking route for illegal narcotics, with an estimated 90 tons of Afghan opiates transiting the “Northern Route” through Central Asia each year. Uzbekistan shares a 137 kilometer border with Afghanistan and borders every other Central Asian republic. In addition to 134 legitimate crossing points, Uzbekistan’s borders include thousands of miles of open desert, rugged mountains, and the Amudarya River, which affords drug traffickers, terrorists, and human traffickers opportunities to enter Uzbek territory undetected . Its well-developed transport infrastructure also facilitates the movement of traffickers, and rampant corruption among government officials means that enforcement efforts may be sporadic or ineffectual.

Although the majority of narcotics transiting Uzbekistan are bound for end use markets in Europe and Russia, not the U.S., the drug trade directly affects civilian and military efforts in Afghanistan and the entire region. Terrorist and extremist groups are active throughout Central Asia, and they use the profits of the drug trade to facilitate their operations. In addition, revenue from illegal narcotics is used to influence officials and corrupt key government institutions, generally undermining the region’s security and stability.

Official data on drug use in Uzbekistan is unreliable, but the number of drug addicts is estimated to be more than 200,000 and is believed to be on the rise. Drug abuse awareness, demand reduction, and treatment programs generally are not given the attention and resources they need to operate effectively.

Uzbekistan’s leadership has recently exhibited renewed political will to deal with drug trafficking. Law enforcement officials in Uzbekistan are generally well-trained and professional, but corruption and lack of resources seriously hinder Uzbekistan’s institutional drug control capabilities. However, if the government of Uzbekistan (GOU) follows through on its latest commitments to crack down on corruption, it may have a positive impact on counternarcotics efforts.

Uzbekistan relies heavily on support and training provided by international partners. International cooperation continually ebbs and flows, but seems to be following a generally upward trend, although changing political winds dictate the pace of cooperation and joint counternarcotics efforts continue to be seriously hampered by the GOU’s onerous bureaucracy. Uzbekistan is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

In 2010, the GOU identified combating drug trafficking as one of its top three security priorities. Uzbekistan has also recently initiated new counter-corruption efforts that, if implemented properly, have the potential to drastically improve the counternarcotics situation in Uzbekistan. The GOU has also gradually ramped up cooperation with international partners.

Drug production in Uzbekistan remains negligible. The amount of drugs transiting through Uzbekistan has remained relatively constant over the last year, but unconfirmed reports suggest that consumption is rising.

A developing trend points to the presence of Iranian-made crystal methamphetamine in Uzbekistan. In 2010, several Uzbek nationals were arrested in Malaysia and Indonesia for the distribution of crystal methamphetamine, which was transported from Uzbekistan to Southeast Asia via direct flights from Tashkent.

In theory, the GOU encourages cooperation with foreign counterparts in criminal investigations, but in practice, Uzbekistan has yet to overcome huge institutional obstacles to establish healthy working relationships with its international partners. A general lack of collaboration with the neighboring countries is also a major weakness of Uzbekistan’s law enforcement efforts. However, in 2010 the National Security Service (NSS) of Uzbekistan and the National Security Committee (KNB) of Kazakhstan conducted a joint operation that resulted in the seizure of more than 125 kilograms (kg) of illegal drugs and the arrest of one of the leaders of a transnational drug trafficking organization.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) reestablished a presence in Uzbekistan in November 2009. The Tashkent Country Office (CO) has been developing working relationships with its GOU counterparts; in 2010, the Tashkent CO and GOU officials participated in several international conferences focused on sharing drug-related information and breaking down regional and international barriers to cooperation. The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) has also begun to support counternarcotics efforts in Uzbekistan through the Office of Military Cooperation (OMC).

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) worked closely with both DEA and the State Department’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL) to conduct a number of counternarcotics programs in Uzbekistan in 2010, including projects focused on precursor chemical control, controlled deliveries, and border control and interdiction.

Russia partners with Uzbekistan in counternarcotics projects through the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO). Several European Union (EU) countries also support counternarcotics projects, such as the Border Management and Drug Action Program in Central Asia (BOMCA/CADAP), which is sponsored by the EU and implemented by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).

Access to Uzbek government officials is very slow and bureaucratic, a perpetual problem for Uzbekistan’s international partners. Uzbek law enforcement officers are not free to act without heavy political oversight. Most communication with Uzbek counterparts is restricted to formal diplomatic channels, which seriously limits opportunities to share investigative leads and drug-related intelligence.

Uzbekistan is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances, and the 1961 UN Single Convention as amended by the 1972 Protocol. Uzbekistan is also a party to the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and to the UN Convention against Corruption.

Uzbekistan has signed the Central Asian Counternarcotics Memorandum of Understanding with the UNODC, and in 2006 agreed to the establishment of a Central Asian Regional Information and Coordination Center (CARICC) to coordinate information sharing and joint counternarcotics efforts in Central Asia.

In 2006, the GOU also signed agreements on increased counternarcotics cooperation in the context of its membership in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization and the CSTO. However, to date, these agreements have produced few tangible results.

2. Supply Reduction

Uzbekistan’s overall counternarcotics situation depends heavily on its geography, and regional developments can significantly affect counternarcotics efforts. Three of Uzbekistan’s neighbors – Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan – faced serious security threats in 2010. Political upheaval shook Kyrgyzstan in April 2010, and ethnic violence in southern Kyrgyzstan caused at least 100,000 refugees to cross Uzbekistan’s border in June 2010. A number of events have likewise affected the security and stability of Tajikistan. The GOU believes that drug traffickers operate with impunity in both countries, and does not trust that its eastern neighbors will be able to counter threats effectively. The GOU also seems to worry that violence and unrest could spill across their borders into Uzbekistan.

The GOU has been cooperating with various international partners to implement projects that would improve regional transportation infrastructure with the ultimate goal of increasing trade. As cross-border traffic between Uzbekistan and its neighbors increases, particularly across the Uzbek-Afghan border, so too will opportunities for drug trafficking. Uzbekistan’s shared border with Afghanistan is relatively short and highly militarized, but traffickers are able to exploit its weaknesses by crossing at unpatrolled sections, crossing under cover of darkness, or in some cases bribing officials. Traffickers may also move from Afghanistan into another neighboring country – Turkmenistan or Tajikistan – and then into Uzbekistan. Uzbekistan’s borders with Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan are very long and pass through vast amounts of rough and isolated terrain.

Uzbekistan continues to work toward the goals of the 1988 UN Drug Convention on combating illicit cultivation and production of narcotics. The first phase of the annual "Black Poppy" eradication campaign involved more than 12,000 police officers and 9,000 civilians, 992 vehicles, 362 canine teams, communications equipment and helicopters. It eliminated just a small amount of illicit crops.

However, information developed in 2010 suggests that very small scale production of narcotics for local consumption may be more widespread than was previously realized.

Uzbek law enforcement seized a total of 2457 kg of illicit drugs in the first half of 2010, a 35 percent increase in comparison with the same period last year. Opium poppy straw accounted for 35 percent of the total seizure, heroin for 27 percent, cannabis for 14 percent, opium for 13 percent, and hashish for 9 percent.

According to preliminary statistics provided by the National Information Agency, in the first half of 2010, authorities opened 4584 narcotics-related criminal investigations and conducted 1973 court hearings that resulted in 2881 individuals being convicted of narcotics-related crimes. All of these statistics represent small decreases compared with the same period in 2009.

Current combat missions in Afghanistan, the eradication of poppy, and the destruction of clandestine labs in Northern Afghanistan have driven some Afghan drug traffickers towards the Uzbek border in search of safe havens. Uzbek and Tajik organizations have come to dominate trafficking operations, taking ownership of drug shipments after they depart Afghanistan and overseeing their transportation to markets in Europe and Russia.

Most analysis suggests that the modus operandi of drug traffickers in Uzbekistan has changed very little in the last five years. A few sophisticated drug trafficking organizations use large vehicles, including tanker trucks, to carry large quantities of narcotics across the border concealed in special compartments or hidden in the cargo. These significant “priority target organizations” have links to the larger Central Asia region. They are capable of paying large bribes and consequently are thought to have a higher level of protection by corrupt government officials.

However, drugs are also trafficked by independent organizations involving one or two individuals that operate between Afghanistan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. These independent traffickers cross the border on foot or in cars, carrying between 20 and 50 kg of narcotics.

The southern Surkhandarya Region, bordering Afghanistan, is a major point of entry for drugs into Uzbekistan. The border is delineated by the Amudarya River. During the summer months, the river gives traffickers an easy way to cross the border without passing through the heavily guarded checkpoints around the border town of Termez. Traffickers may wade across the river when water levels are low, or use crude flotation devices such as rafts to pilot their cargo across the water.

From Surkhandarya, traffickers travel north to the capital city of Tashkent and then into Kazakhstan. The high number of seizures in southern Kazakhstan along the Uzbek border indicates that this area is becoming a major transit point for illicit drugs. In addition, narcotics are also smuggled through various Tajik-Uzbek and Kyrgyz-Uzbek border points, as well as through less guarded mountainous passes. The lightly guarded Turkmen-Uzbek border points in the Bukhara Region are also convenient transit points for traffickers.

Afghanistan is the world’s leading producer of opium. Until 2003, the process of converting morphine base to heroin took place mainly in primary and secondary transit countries. However, heroin manufacturing within Afghanistan has increased over the last few years. Since Afghanistan does not produce commercial grade chemicals, illicit precursors must be smuggled in from other countries, including Uzbekistan. The last officially recorded precursor chemical seizure in Uzbekistan occurred in 2008.

Most border officials have no formal training in the detection, identification, and interdiction of precursor chemicals, and precursor chemical interdiction is not a priority for the GOU. Customs officers are not trained on risk analysis procedures, nor do they have access to a database that maintains criminal history information, which would allow them to identify linkages to other cases.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

Drug abuse awareness, demand reduction, and treatment in Uzbekistan have lagged far behind the country’s needs. According to the official statistics of the National Drug Control Center, there were 20,796 registered drug addicts in Uzbekistan at the beginning of 2010, a slight decrease from the previous year. However, experts believe that the problem of drug addiction is actually getting worse. International observers estimate that the actual number of addicts could be ten times higher than the official figure. Opium and heroin are the drugs of choice for almost 80 percent of addicts; other substance abuse involves marijuana, alcohol, and to a lesser degree, pharmaceuticals. Pharmacies legally dispense drugs without a doctor’s prescription. Addiction is largely restricted to males; only about five percent of registered addicts are women.

Demand reduction efforts include a drug prevention component in the curriculum of public schools. Other programs are carried out in cooperation with NGOs, local youth or women’s organizations, religious organizations, and the traditional “mahalla” (neighborhood) support system. Unfortunately, the GOU refused to allow a proposed UNODC program for the prevention of drug use, HIV/AIDS and crime among young people.

Treatment programs are insufficient even for officially registered addicts, and fall far short of the population’s actual needs. For example, approximately 16,000 people are officially registered as opiate addicts, but programs have the capacity to treat only a few hundred. However, a few treatment centers, such as the Tashkent City Narcological Dispensary, provide services including psychosocial and pharmacological interventions (in inpatient and outpatient settings), pharmacologically supported detoxification, relapse prevention, and social services.

For political reasons, the GOU is reluctant to approve certain internationally recognized treatments, such as the use of methodone in opium replacement therapy. Many doctors have an old-fashioned punishment mentality towards drug addiction that can result in a disregard for patients’ rights. Patients may be forced to go “cold turkey” or to undergo a (reportedly very painful) treatment program that utilizes opiate antagonists.

Throughout the region, HIV and other blood-borne infections are strongly associated with the use of injected drugs. The level of awareness about the risk of infection through sharing needles and other drug paraphernalia is extremely low among drug users and the general population.

In 2010, USAID began implementing its Quality Health Care Project (QHCP) to build the capacity of public health systems to meet the health needs of vulnerable groups, including drug users.

4. Corruption

As a matter of policy, the GOU does not encourage or facilitate the production or distribution of illegal narcotics. However, corruption permeates all levels of government. Underpaid police officers expect and accept bribes to ignore infringements ranging from traffic violations to drug trafficking. It is a common practice throughout the former Soviet Union for low-ranking officers to pass a percentage of the bribes they collect to their bosses, who pass a percentage to their bosses. This “pyramid of corruption” probably reaches to the highest levels of government.

Uzbekistan has recently taken steps to implement an anticorruption program. State-INL and UNODC have worked with GOU officials to establish an anticorruption working group comprised of representatives from twelve government agencies. Uzbekistan’s president also issued a decree on measures to counter corruption.

A draft anticorruption action plan sets forth goals to combat corruption on both the official and societal levels, and includes measures to transparently recruit public officials, adopt a code of conduct for public servants, simplify administrative procedures for obtaining government services, and increase public access to government information. This ambitious plan has yet to be implemented.

Based on media reports, there seemed to be a spike in the number of public officials arrested and prosecuted for corruption in 2010, though most of these were not law enforcement officials. Media outlets are tightly controlled by the government. Although increased prosecution for corruption might indicate an increase in political will for dealing with corruption, it is likely that political motivations expose some public officials to accusations of corruption while keeping others immune from prosecution.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

The U.S. Mission in Tashkent’s strategic plan for counternarcotics cooperation is focused on strengthening and securing Uzbekistan’s borders, promoting bilateral investigations of priority targets, and developing Uzbekistan’s overall law enforcement capacity. Multiple U.S. government agencies, including DEA, DOD CENTCOM, State INL, USAID, and the State Department Bureau of Export Control and Border Security (EXBS), play a role in this strategy.

In 2010, the Tashkent CO focused its efforts on laying the foundations for broad-based cooperation with relevant GOU agencies, including the NSS, the Ministry of Interior (MVD), the State Customs Committee, the Border Guards, and the State Commission for Drug Control. The CO and its partner agencies have established protocols for sharing investigative leads, collaborating on investigations, and exchanging best practices. The CO has slowly begun to communicate with its counterparts outside the confines of formal diplomatic channels when the situation warrants it.

The Tashkent CO personnel escorted nine Uzbek officials on a ten day visit to the United States. The delegation, representing the NSS, MVD, State Border Protection Committee (SBPC), the State Customs Committee (SCC), MFA, and the NSC, visited DEA headquarters and other sites including the U.S.-Mexico border. The visit promoted interagency cooperation, showcased available counternarcotics resources, fostered regional information exchange, and facilitated discussion about law enforcement capabilities, Afghan spillover violence, bilateral priority target investigations, and best practices.

In conjunction with DEA’s Special Testing and Research Laboratory, the Tashkent CO hosted a week-long seminar for Uzbek forensic chemists that included training on synthetic drug testing procedures and internationally accepted drug testing standards.

The Tashkent CO expects a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between DEA and the Uzbek MVD to be signed in 2011. The MOU will lay the legal foundation for bilateral investigations and counternarcotics cooperation.

In December 2010, the USG and GOU law enforcement agencies jointly sponsored a regional drug conference in Tashkent. The forum brought together 52 senior level law enforcement officials representing 15 countries. The focus of the conference was to break down barriers to communication, foster cooperation, share information, and collectively target transnational drug organizations whose activities directly impact the region. All sides hope this will significantly speed up the exchange of international drug information, best practices and training.

Going forward, the Tashkent CO, working with Uzbek counterparts, will identify, prioritize, and target the most significant international drug and chemical trafficking organizations operating within Uzbekistan and the region. Once organizations are identified, the Tashkent CO and its partners will develop and execute an investigative strategy aimed at disrupting and dismantling the organization’s leadership, financial structures, and operations.

U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), through its Office of Military Cooperation (OMC) supports activities that enhance border security and develop the counternarcotics infrastructure of the host nation. The OMC’s counternarcotics assistance facilitates support for counternarcotics cooperation as it aids OMC’s law enforcement partners. Currently OMC is working with the Border Guards to construct a border inspection facility on the border of Tajikistan.

D. Conclusion

Strengthening counternarcotics efforts in Uzbekistan is of strategic importance to the United States, particularly in the context of U.S. involvement in Afghanistan and the rest of the region. Due to its geographic position, Uzbekistan could have an immediate impact on the international effort to stem the flow of illegal narcotics and stabilize Afghanistan.

Combating drug trafficking is one of Uzbekistan’s top national priorities. Officials understand that drug trafficking and illicit drug profits undermine the country’s overall security and corrupt key government institutions. Officials also acknowledge the potential for drug-financed spillover violence and are developing a campaign to address these threats. GOU law enforcement agencies are eager to cooperate with the USG and other international stakeholders, but are reluctant to do so without clear political support, which can limit the pace and extent of cooperation. Law enforcement agencies labor under an old bureaucratic infrastructure preventing the GOU from implementing an effective counternarcotics strategy and building law enforcement bridges with neighboring countries. It also prevents the USG from developing a sustained partnership.

Uzbekistan still needs to overcome corruption and the reluctance to cooperate fully and openly with international partners. Cooperation with international partners, training that meets international standards, and general exposure to international best practices will contribute to improving Uzbekistan’s counternarcotics capacity.


Venezuela

A. Introduction

Venezuela is a major drug-transit country. A porous western border with Colombia, a weak judicial system, inconsistent international counternarcotics cooperation, and a generally permissive and corrupt environment have made Venezuela one of the preferred trafficking routes out of South America to the Eastern Caribbean, Central America, the United States, Europe and western Africa. The United Nations’ 2010 World Drug Report described Venezuela as a major departure point for maritime cocaine shipments, and reported that between 2006 and 2008, over half the detected maritime shipments of cocaine to Europe came through Venezuela. The media reported an increased presence of Mexican drug trafficking organizations, including the Sinaloa cartel and Los Zetas, in operations to smuggle drugs through Venezuela. The President determined in 2010, as in the five previous years, that Venezuela failed demonstrably to adhere to its obligations under international counternarcotics agreements.

The Government of Venezuela’s (GBRV) counternarcotics effort is led by the National Anti-Drug Office (ONA). Enforcement is principally carried out by the National Guard and the Scientific, Penal, and Criminal Investigative Body (CICPC), although state and municipal police forces also conduct counternarcotics operations. Venezuelan law enforcement lacks the equipment, training, and reach to match the resources and scope of major drug trafficking organizations. Effective prosecution of drug traffickers is hindered by corruption and a lack of judicial independence

Some limited coca cultivation occurs along Venezuela’s border with Colombia, but the levels are historically insignificant. Low-grade marijuana is grown in various parts of Venezuela but is not exported due to its poor quality.

In 2010, illegal drug use remained a significant problem, with marijuana as the most commonly consumed illicit drug in Venezuela, followed by cocaine and its “crack” derivative.

Bilateral counternarcotics cooperation between Venezuela and the United States is inadequate, and continues only on a limited, case-by-case basis. The lack of greater counternarcotics cooperation is consistent with the Venezuelan government’s decision to reduce involvement with the United States across the board. Venezuela has not signed the addendum to the 1978 Bilateral Counternarcotics Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the United States that was negotiated in 2005. Venezuela is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

The National Anti-Drug Plan for 2009-2013 includes the creation of a national anti-drug system under the ONA to consolidate and coordinate anti-drug efforts. The plan calls for more research to assess both the extent of drug abuse in Venezuela, as well as the effectiveness of drug abuse prevention programs. The plan promotes the creation of state and municipal level anti-drug offices to implement national policies. It also proposes the creation of a counternarcotics judicial jurisdiction, composed of specially trained judges and personnel, to expedite prosecution of drug-related offenses. There was no information available about the implementation of the 2009-2013 plan by year’s end.

In January 2010, the government announced the creation of a National Anti-Drug Fund to finance programs to prevent drug abuse, money laundering, and narcotrafficking. It called for community councils or NGOs to implement demand reduction programs.

In September 2010, the National Assembly adopted an Organic Law on Drugs to replace the previous Organic Law on Narcotic and Psychotropic Substances. The new law increases potential penalties for drug trafficking or related crimes to between 8-30 years imprisonment. It provides for heavy fines on media outlets that promote drug consumption in their programming or advertising and mandates creation of a holistic national plan for drug prevention and treatment programs. The new law gives the ONA the authority to seize and use assets of individuals connected with drug trafficking. The new law also amended the previous law, which required companies to donate one percent of their profits to demand reduction programs certified by the government. The new law specifies that companies with more than 50 workers must give the one percent of their profits directly to the ONA, which manages the National Anti-Drug Fund.

Venezuela is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1961 UN Single Convention as amended by the 1972 Protocol, and the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances. Venezuela is a party to the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its protocols against trafficking in persons and migrant smuggling, and the UN Convention against Corruption. Venezuela is also a party to the Inter-American Convention against Terrorism, the Inter-American Convention against Corruption, and the Inter-American Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters. It also remains an active member of the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD).

The GBRV has signed a number of bilateral agreements with the United States, including a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty that entered into force in March 2004; a Customs Mutual Assistance Agreement; and a 1991 Ship-Boarding Agreement (updated in 1997) that authorizes the United States to board suspect Venezuelan-flagged vessels on the high seas. The continued, unimpeded use of the ship-boarding agreement has been essential to the United States in its counternarcotics efforts. While the United States and the GBRV signed a bilateral Memorandum of Understanding concerning counternarcotics cooperation in 1978, the GBRV has not signed a 2005 addendum that would extend the agreement.

The United States and Venezuela are parties to an extradition treaty that entered into force in 1923; however, the treaty has limited application due to the 1999 Venezuelan constitution, which bars the extradition of Venezuelan nationals.

2. Supply Reduction

Venezuela remains a major transit country for cocaine shipments by air, land, and sea. Suspected narcotics trafficking flights depart from the Venezuelan states bordering Colombia. Cargo containers, fishing vessels, and “go-fast” boats were used to move narcotics out of Venezuela by sea. There are approximately 250 metric tons of cocaine transiting through Venezuela annually, according to USG cocaine-movement estimates.

The vast majority of illicit narcotics that transited Venezuela were destined for the Eastern Caribbean, Central America, the United States, Europe, and western Africa.

Illegal armed groups in Colombia, including two U.S.-designated Foreign Terrorist Organizations (FTOs), the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the National Liberation Army (ELN), were linked to the most aggressive and successful drug trafficking organizations moving narcotics through Venezuela. Media reports alleged some elements of Venezuela’s security forces have directly assisted these organizations. During 2010, the media reported that Mexican drug trafficking organizations, including the Sinaloa cartel and Los Zetas, were increasingly involved in drug smuggling operations through Venezuela.

In 2010 the GBRV took delivery of radars and two new coastal patrol vessels purportedly intended for combating drug trafficking. At least six of the 10 radar systems purchased in 2007 from China reportedly were installed. These systems can be used to scan for illegal drug flights.

While the GBRV publicly reports seizures of illicit drugs, it is not part of the Cooperating Nations Information Exchange System (CNIES) partner nations and does not share the data or evidence needed to verify seizures or the destruction of illicit drugs. The Venezuelan Public Ministry reported on November 26 that the government had destroyed 127.7 MT of different drugs between 2008 and October 2010, but these figures could not be independently verified. The GBRV reported that it seized nearly 63 MT of illegal drugs in 2010. Sixty percent of the seizures were of marijuana (38 MT – compared to 32.3 MT in 2009) and 39 percent were cocaine (24 MT – compared to 27.7 MT in 2009). The remainder consisted of crack cocaine (170 kilograms), bazuco (65 kilograms), and heroin (53 kilograms – compared to 81 kilograms in 2009).

According to the ONA, in 2010 the GBRV arrested 12,376 individuals in connection with the possession or trafficking of illegal drugs; 371 of these individuals were reported to be foreign nationals. The Public Ministry also reported that between 2008 and October 2010, the government charged 23,327 individuals on drug-related offenses, 14,642 of whom were convicted. No information was available on the nature or severity of the drug offenses.

In October 2010, the GBRV announced it would reinforce “Operation Centinela,” begun in 2009 to combat the transit of narcotics through Venezuela, by sending an additional 15,000 troops to the Colombian border, but there is no confirmation from the GBRV that this took place. Counternarcotics operations under “Operation Centinela,” including drug seizures and destruction of drug labs, were reported throughout the year, and the GBRV reported it had dismantled eighteen drug processing labs in 2010 in the border state of Zulia. As a result of government interdiction efforts, in August 2010, ten Venezuelan National Guard members died in a helicopter crash while carrying out a counternarcotics mission in the border state of Apure.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

Illegal drug use remains a significant problem in Venezuela. NGOs throughout the country offer drug abuse awareness, demand reduction, and treatment programs. As part of its National Plan for Integrated Prevention, the GBRV continued the Planting Values for Life program, a comprehensive drug prevention initiative. In 2010 demand reduction training was given to education professionals, representatives of parent associations, community councils and heads of education institutions. In several states, community council, university and other local leaders were trained to establish advisory groups to assist the community in soliciting funds from ONA for drug use prevention programs.

However, the ONA continues to be slow to certify NGOs implementing counter drug programs. Several NGOs claimed to have been denied ONA certification for political reasons, and NGOs receiving assistance from the United States claimed that it was difficult to receive ONA certification.

4. Corruption

Public corruption continued to be a major issue in Venezuela and appears to have contributed to drug trafficking organizations’ use of Venezuela to transit drugs in 2010. As a matter of stated government policy, the GBRV does not encourage, support, or facilitate illegal activity associated with drug trafficking. Media reports claimed that members of the Venezuelan government and security forces were allegedly engaged in or facilitated illegal activity associated with drug trafficking.

The new Organic Law on Drugs imposed additional penalties on officials from military and security forces convicted of participating or facilitating narcotics trafficking, with these additional penalties ranging from 8-18 years in prison. However, there was no public information available about investigations of senior government officials allegedly involved in narcotics trafficking.

The GBRV did not take action against government and military officials known to be linked to the FARC in 2010. For instance, in November, President Chavez promoted Henry Rangel Silva, Chief of the Armed Force’s Strategic Operation Command, who was designated under the Kingpin Act by the U.S. Treasury Department in September 2008 for materially assisting the narcotics trafficking activities of the FARC, to the four-star equivalent rank of General in Chief. Moreover, the Prosecutor General also awarded Rangel Silva the Citizen’s Merit Medal for his “service in defense of the interests of the country and the constitution.”

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

Since ceasing formal cooperation with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in 2005, the GBRV has maintained only limited case-by-case counternarcotics cooperation with the United States. The United States proposed that the GBRV sign a 2005 addendum to the 1978 U.S.-Venezuelan bilateral counternarcotics MOU that would have permitted expanded cooperation, but Venezuelan officials have stated publicly that Venezuela will neither sign a bilateral agreement nor cooperate with the United States on counternarcotics.

Bilateral cooperation with the United States in 2010 mainly consisted of informal information exchanges with remaining DEA representatives in Caracas, coordination of fugitive deportations from Venezuela to the United States, and maritime interdiction activities carried out by the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG).

The GBRV deported 17 fugitives wanted on narcotics trafficking-related charges during 2010, including six to the United States, four of whom were Consolidated Priority Targets. Among those deported to the United States was Carlos Renteria-Mantilla, for whom the U.S. Department of State had offered a reward of up to $5 million for information leading to his arrest and/or conviction. The other 11 fugitives were deported to other countries, including Colombia, Peru, France, and The Netherlands.

The GBRV continued to permit the USCG boarding of Venezuelan-flagged vessels on the high seas suspected of being engaged in narcotics trafficking. During 2010, the GBRV cooperated with the USCG in nine maritime drug interdiction cases, compared to three cases in 2009. In one case, the USCG recovered 100 pounds of cocaine jettisoned by one Venezuelan pirogue but was unable to recover the suspected narcotics jettisoned overboard in two other cases. The United States is unaware of the Venezuelan Navy or Coast Guard making any at-sea drug seizures on its own in 2010.

There was no information available in 2010 about the operational status of the U.S.-funded Container Inspection Facility at Puerto Cabello; the ONA informed U.S. officials in November 2009 of its intent to activate the facility.

Interior Minister el Aissami announced in July 2009 that police officers who received training abroad without the Ministry’s approval would be fired and punished, and that any foreign law enforcement experts providing training in Venezuela without authorization would face arrest. In 2010, there was little interest by Venezuelan law enforcement authorities in U.S.-funded counternarcotics training programs.

Despite the capture and deportation to Colombia of several suspected FARC and ELN members in 2010, the GBRV appeared to tolerate FARC and ELN presence and did not take significant steps to limit their ability to operate with impunity in Venezuelan territory. During the year, the Colombian government continued to accuse the GBRV of harboring the FARC and the ELN in Venezuela territory, where they were able to rest and regroup, engage in narcotics trafficking, and extort protection money and kidnap Venezuelans to finance their operations. On August 10 2010, newly-inaugurated Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos and President Chavez met in Santa Marta, Colombia, and announced the restoration of diplomatic relations, including the establishment of a bilateral commission with five working groups, including one on security. Underscoring the more cooperative relationship, in November 2010, Venezuela deported two ELN and one FARC member to Colombia. In December 2010, the GBRV captured alleged ELN leader Nilson Terán Ferre, alias “Tulio,” and promised to turn him over to Colombia. Following Venezuela’s capture in December of the ELN’s second in command, President Santos recognized the growing cooperation on the security front.

In August, the GBRV requested the extradition from Colombia of Walid Makled, allegedly Venezuela's largest drug trafficker, shortly after he had been apprehended by Colombian security forces. In 2009, the U.S. Department of Treasury had designated Makled a Significant Foreign Narcotics Trafficker under the Kingpin Act. Makled reportedly had connections to the FARC. Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos announced on November 16 that Makled would be returned to Venezuela after the completion of Colombia’s required judicial proceedings. The GBRV reported having seized the following assets from Makled: 11 businesses, including the airline Aeropostal, one airplane, two boats, 77 trucks, and three properties.

D. Conclusion

The United States remains prepared to deepen cooperation with Venezuela to help counter the increasing flow of illegal drugs transiting Venezuelan territory. Cooperation could be improved through a formal re-engagement between Venezuelan and U.S. law enforcement agencies on counternarcotics issues. Cooperation could also be improved through the signing of the outstanding Bilateral Counternarcotics MOU addendum, which would provide funds for joint counternarcotics projects. In addition, Venezuelan port security could be enhanced through the activation of the Container Inspection Facility at Puerto Cabello, which was partially funded by the United States Government, and through the GBRV's participation in the USCG's International Port Security Program, which helps to assess a country’s major seaports and to develop best practices for enhanced maritime security. The last assessment in Venezuela was conducted in 2004, but the GBRV has denied requests by the United States to return. These steps would increase the exchange of actionable intelligence, help to dismantle organized criminal networks, aid in the prosecution of criminals engaged in narcotrafficking, and help stem the flow of illicit drugs transiting Venezuelan airspace, land, and sea.


Vietnam

A. Introduction

Vietnam remains a target for drug trafficking organizations seeking to establish and expand their international smuggling routes from production sites in the Golden Triangle (Thailand, Burma, and Laos) and the Golden Crescent (Afghanistan). Vietnam’s geographic location and improving, but still limited drug-enforcement capacities make it an attractive target for drug-trafficking organizations for transshipping illicit narcotics to the international market place. Vietnam continues to work with neighboring countries and regional partners to combat drugs more effectively. U.S. cooperation continues to develop with programs focusing on law enforcement training and health-related projects. In coming years, Vietnam’s role as a transit country for drugs trafficked to the U.S. may become a concern as expanding trade and other ties draw the two countries closer.

According to Vietnam's Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), relatively small quantities of opium are still being grown in 12 northern mountainous provinces, particularly in the border provinces of Son La, Lao Cai, Yen Bai, Lai Chau, Lang Son, Gia Lai, Dak Lak, Ha Giang and Dong Nai. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) reported an increase in opium poppy seed cultivation from 37.9 hectares (ha) in 2007 to 99 ha in 2009. Despite this increase, the GVN has downplayed this trend by publicly highlighting successes such as the Nghe An Border Guard's eradication of approximately three opium fields covering thousands of square meters during the first quarter of 2010. According to state-sponsored media, growers have become more creative in concealing their illicit activities by planting opium with vegetables in remote areas so authorities only discover the cultivation after the opium has been harvested. Opium cultivation in Vietnam probably accounts for only about one percent of the total cultivation in Southeast Asia, according to law enforcement estimates, and is well below the 1000 hectares, which would make Vietnam a Major Producer under U.S. law.

According to a representative from MARD, cannabis continues to be grown in many provinces and cities, particularly in the Central Highlands, and the Northern Delta. Police have reported cases in which growers have employed modern technology such as greenhouses, hydroponic watering, and artificial light in the growing of cannabis. In February 2010, Ministry of Public Security (MPS) Counter-Narcotics Department officials publicly warned that increasing amounts of cannabis are now being cultivated by drug dealers in underground basements using modern indoor hydroponic cultivation techniques.

During 2010, the GVN continued enforcement and awareness programs aimed at avoiding a youth synthetic drug epidemic; however, the GVN counter-narcotics officials note that, as a developing country, Vietnam will continue to face resource constraints for the foreseeable future, despite annual budget increases for counter-narcotics efforts. Operational cooperation with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration's (DEA) Hanoi Country Office has improved, but further progress is still needed in order to achieve significant results. Vietnam is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

B. Drug Control Accomplishments, Policies, and Trends

1. Institutional Development

Overall, national drug control policy-making and coordination is the responsibility of the Vietnam National Committee for AIDS, Drugs and Prostitution Control (NCADP), which consists of 19 member ministries and is directed by an inter-ministerial management committee chaired by a Deputy Prime Minister. Deputy Chair responsibilities are shared by the Ministers of Public Security, Health (MOH), Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs (MoLISA); and a representative of the Communist Party-led "umbrella" organization, the Fatherland Front. MPS, as NCADP's standing member, has a specialized unit to combat and suppress drug crimes. The Standing Office for Drugs and Crime (SODC) under the MPS is responsible for assisting the Minister of Public Security, as NCADP Vice Chair, in advising the Government on developing and coordinating counter-narcotics policies. The SODC also maintains an information unit for collecting and maintaining data on drug trafficking and other drug-related crimes.

The GVN has placed counter-narcotics issues high on its agenda and is committed to pursuing a comprehensive national drug control policy. In June 2009, the National Assembly passed a significant amendment to the Criminal Code that maintains severe penalties for transporting and storing narcotics -- including a mandatory death sentence for possession/trafficking of 600 grams or more of heroin or 20 kilograms of opium gum or cannabis resin -- but also ends punishment for simple use (as opposed to trafficking) of narcotics. The revised penal code has been in effect since January 1, 2010.

The GVN views drug awareness and prevention as vital tools and significant objectives in its fight against illicit narcotics trafficking and abuse, as well as integral parts of its effort to comply fully with the 1988 UN Drug Convention. The GVN relies heavily on counter-narcotics education, culminating in an annual drug awareness month in June. Officially sponsored counternarcotics activities cover every aspect of society, from schools to unions to civic organizations and government offices.

In May 2010, the Ministry of Health submitted to the government a proposal to provide methadone free of charge to 80,000 drug addicts for use during their treatment from now to 2015. The authorities hope for more effective treatment of drug addicts and they believe that methadone maintenance during treatment will reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS. Each province and city will establish 2 - 4 methadone treatment centers as part of this effort.

Despite some difficulties, Vietnam is committed to working with international partners to combat illicit drug use and is working with the UNODC to improve its counter-narcotics and interagency capabilities. In late August 2009, the MPS and the UNODC signed a project to improve Vietnam’s counter-narcotics capabilities. The first phase of the project was to help train more than 200 law enforcement officials from MPS, Maritime Police, and Border Guard. The project introduced standardized interagency forms for collection, analysis and dissemination of information. During the project’s first phase, 250 law enforcement officers were trained, including 12 trainers, who received training in Thailand. Upon finishing their training, these trainers helped organize training at more than 20 training workshops in Vietnam. In addition, 30 computers were provided to permit future computer based training to law enforcement officials.

Vietnam’s counter-narcotics enforcement agencies/units understand the need for regional and global cooperation in investigations. They try to work with immediate neighbors and the international community to investigate narcotics cases. The GVN has signed MOUs with Cambodia and China and has a bilateral agreement with Laos. These cooperative arrangements allow for information sharing on organized criminal syndicates, wanted criminals, drugs sales and consumption, poppy cultivation, coordinating efforts on drug cases, undertaking joint investigations, and apprehending drug-related suspects. Of these bordering nations, Vietnam works closest with Cambodia in regards to curbing the trafficking of illicit drugs. According to the NCADP, cooperation between the two nations has contributed to the reduction of illicit narcotics crossing the border. Vietnam state-sponsored media reported that nearly 2000 smuggling and 600 drug related cases have been uncovered on the Vietnamese-Cambodian border in the past two years as a result of the cooperation between the two countries.

In October 2010, Vietnam hosted close to 100 delegates from over 20 Asia-Pacific countries in Hanoi to discuss and share experiences in drug prevention and control, and increase international cooperation. In early April 2010, a counter drug assistance and cooperation agreement was signed between South Korea and Vietnam. The assistance and cooperation agreement is under a $2.9 million dollar project aimed at improving infrastructure and information technology in the fight against drugs. South Korea hopes to help the MPS build an extensive database on drug prevention and help train Vietnamese staff in data analysis techniques that can be used in tracking drug traffickers. Additionally, Vietnam has signed crime prevention and cooperation agreements on counter drugs and money laundering with Malaysia and Germany in the first quarter of 2010.

2. Supply Reduction

During 2010, various types of Amphetamine Type Stimulants (ATS) manufactured in Cambodia, China, Laos, Burma and Thailand were smuggled into Vietnam for local consumption and further transshipment to the international market. For the first half of 2010, the Vietnam Waterway Police report executing 18 drug raids, arresting 22 Vietnamese nationals and seizing 530.5 grams of heroin in their jurisdiction. The majority of arrestees were either drug abusers or street-level dealers. The Waterway Police also reported seizures of small quantities of opium resin, dried marijuana, and MDMA-ecstasy. According to the latest figures obtained from the Border Guard Army, during the first half of 2010, the Border Guard Army investigated 59 drug cases, conducted 368 drug raids, and arrested 517 individuals. The total amount of narcotics seized from January to June 2010, includes 48 kilograms of heroin, 38,713 MDMA tablets, 1.7 kilograms of opium, 15.6 kilograms of marijuana and 694 tablets of psychotropic medicines.

ATS can now be found throughout the country, especially in places frequented by young people. ATS, such as amphetamine, ecstasy, methamphetamine (to include crystal methamphetamine or ICE), and other drugs continue to be a focus of concern for the government. These drugs are popular in major cities such as Hanoi, Hai Phong, Da Nang and HCMC. Because of the presence of ethnic Vietnamese gangs operating among the large Vietnamese populations in Canada, Australia and the U.S., Vietnam-based DTOs may start shipping precursor chemicals and ecstasy from Vietnam into Canada for eventual distribution into the U.S.

3. Drug Abuse Awareness, Demand Reduction, and Treatment

According to the latest available figures released by the MoLISA, there were 180,000 officially registered injecting drug users (IDU) nationwide, compared to the SODC reported 150,000 at the end of June 2009. MoLISA reports an estimated 35,000 IDUs being detained in 100 government operated rehabilitation centers. HIV infection is estimated at over 60 percent in some facilities. The most common drugs used were heroin (81.9 percent), opium (9.8 percent), synthetic drugs (3.7 percent), multi-drug use (2.8 percent), and cannabis (1 percent). The main use pattern was injection (62.2 percent), followed by inhaling (27.3 percent), smoking (6.4 percent), and ingestion (3.9 percent). Glue sniffing is an alarming new trend among many HCMC youth and teenagers.

Vietnam strives to integrate addiction treatment and vocational training to facilitate the rehabilitation of drug addicts. Vietnam has 116 provincial-level detention centers providing detention and detoxification to about 33,000 drug addicts, a significant decrease compared with the more than 100,000 in detention during 2007. The number of “unofficial” drug users is at least several times higher than registered drug users, according to many well-informed observers. Unfortunately, Vietnam’s detention treatment facilities are largely ineffective in preventing relapses. An estimated 95 percent relapse into regular drug use after leaving the centers is the norm. In order to combat the problem of failed treatment, several provinces have provided vocational training for more than 4,000 drug addicts; and facilitated 150 follow-on jobs. In September the government issued a new decree allowing for more effective treatment through community-based drug detoxification and support as opposed to focusing solely on detention centers. Each province and city will also establish 2 - 4 methadone treatment centers as part of the effort to reduce the number of drug addicts and indirectly reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS. As of November 2010 there are 13 methadone clinics in 5 provinces; more clinics are set to open in early 2011. Each clinic is providing methadone treatment for approximately 250 people although some clinics are serving up to 400 patients.

Several ministries undertake demand-reduction activities, which include the distribution of counter-narcotics leaflets and videos, and organized counter-narcotics painting contests for children. Counter-narcotics material is also available in all schools, and the Ministry of Education and Training (MOET) sponsors various workshops and campaigns at all school levels. The UNODC assesses the GVN drug awareness efforts favorably, but considers these efforts to have had minimal impact on the existing addict and HIV/AIDS populations.

According to a report from the NCADP, the state budget for the drug control program in 2008 was 250 billion Vietnamese Dong (VND) or $14.7 million. In 2009, the budget was increased to 345 billion VND or $20.3 million.

4. Corruption

As a matter of GVN policy, Vietnam does not encourage or facilitate illicit production or distribution of narcotic or psychotropic drugs or other controlled substances, or the laundering of proceeds from illegal drug transactions. No information specifically links any senior GVN official with engaging in, encouraging or facilitating the illicit production or distribution of drugs or substances, or the laundering of proceeds from illegal drug transactions. Nevertheless, a certain level of corruption, both among lower-level enforcement personnel and higher-level officials, is consistent with the fairly large-scale movement of narcotics into and out of Vietnam. The GVN has demonstrated its willingness to prosecute some corrupt officials, although most of the targets were relatively low level.

There were no reported cases of drug related corruption within law enforcement or the government in 2010. However, on March 11, 2010, Thai Nguyen Province's People's Court initiated a 20-day trial of 21 heroin traffickers for their illicit activity in 2006 along with eight government personnel who accepted bribes in an attempt to aid defendants to evade sentencing. The eight government officials included local customs inspectors, counter-narcotics police officers, and judges.

C. National Goals, Bilateral Cooperation, and U.S. Policy Initiatives

Vietnam is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, the 1961 UN Single Convention as amended by the 1972 Protocol, and the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic Substances. Vietnam has signed, but has not yet ratified, the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime.

Vietnam ratified the UN Corruption Convention on June 20, 2009. Vietnam issued a statement saying it would not be held to item 2, Article 66 of this convention. This item stipulates that if disputes on the explanation and application of the convention cannot be solved by negotiation or arbitrators, members have the right to bring the case to the international private law court. Vietnam also stated to it would not adhere to some optional regulations, such as criminalizing illegal money-making acts, corruption in the private sector, the use of special investigative techniques, which Vietnamese laws do not cover. In addition, Vietnam does not consider this convention as a direct legal foundation for the extradition of corruption-related criminals; extradition must be based on Vietnamese laws.

The United States counter-narcotics policy objectives in Vietnam are aimed at strengthening law enforcement cooperation and assisting Vietnam to expand the capacity of its counter-narcotics law enforcement agencies. Accordingly, in February 2010, DEA and the GVN renewed their MOU regarding counter- drug cooperation, first signed in November 2006. The MOU between the two agencies is currently the primary mechanism in place to facilitate cooperation. This MOU is a non-binding agreement intended to promote information sharing and coordinated operations between DEA and the MPS. The renewed MOU is effective for three additional years, and aims to solidify joint cooperation efforts to combat transnational drug-trafficking and money laundering. The MOU has allowed the MPS, on a case-by-case basis, to work with the USG officials where cooperation is permitted within Vietnam’s existing legal and procedural framework. The MPS also appears to be more willing to provide responses to DEA requests for information. The percentage of responses to requests for information from GVN law enforcement has risen from approximately 28 percent to in excess of 51 percent in 2010. The DEA views this as an indicator of an increased willingness to cooperate in matters related to counternarcotics efforts in spite of the slow pace of legislative change which will ultimately lead to true bilateral investigations.

The USG sponsors and funds capacity-building efforts like GVN participation at international events and conferences, as well as conducting training activities. In August 2010, DEA – with funding from Joint Interagency Task Force West (JIATF-W) – sponsored training for 90 MPS officers. The course provided tactical and emergency medical training. Additionally, DEA and JIATF-W work with MPS on an infrastructure support project involving the construction of a joint training facility in Vinh Vietnam. The International Law Enforcement Academy in Bangkok provides law enforcement training to Vietnamese officers each year on a range of counter-narcotics related courses, training approximately 4 Vietnamese students per course, with a total of 60 - 100 Vietnamese officers trained per year.

In coordination with the DOS and DOD, the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) is assisting the Government of Vietnam to enhance the capacity and capability of its maritime law enforcement organization, the Vietnam Marine Police (VMP), a unit within the Ministry of Defense. The USCG-VMP relationship began in 2009 with the introduction of entry level maritime law enforcement training delivered in multiple Vietnamese cities. Based on a very positive outcome, training was expanded to include more advance law enforcement training to VMP and several of its sister organizations (e.g. navy and customs). Vietnamese maritime officers are now regular attendees to the U.S. Coast Guard's premier international course, the International Maritime Officer Course (IMOC), in the U.S. In support of a U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM) initiative, the USCG is providing Search and Rescue training to maritime officers both in Vietnam as well as in the U.S. Looking ahead to 2011, the USCG will support a PACOM initiative to install Search and Rescue Operating System (SAROPS) in multiple locations throughout Vietnam. This state of the art computer tool, which can be used beyond SAR planning, will substantially increase the VMP's search and rescue and overall maritime planning capability. In 2011, the USCG will also begin the process of infusing its maritime law enforcement curriculum into the VMP training program in an ongoing effort to build self-sufficiency in this area. Each of the above efforts will substantially increase the VMP's overall maritime capacity/capability in law enforcement and beyond.

The Government of Vietnam and the Government of the United States work closely together to support policy reform as well as continuing to invest in training and quality assurance of technical strategies and health policies as part of PEPFAR Vietnam’s goal to strengthen the country’s healthcare systems. Injecting drug use is the main behavior driving HIV transmission in Vietnam. Surveillance surveys estimate that up to 40.67 percent of persons who inject drugs in high-prevalence provinces are living with HIV. While the national HIV/AIDS prevalence rate remains low at 0.43 percent, Vietnam continues to work hard to limit transmission into the general population. The Partnership Framework provides a strategic agenda for cooperation between our two governments and continues a joint commitment for the reduction of new HIV infections, improved HIV/AIDS prevention, care, and treatment services, and mitigation of the impact in Vietnam, while contributing substantially to strengthen Vietnam’s health system. The Partnership Framework goals address access to and the quality and sustainability of HIV/AIDS services, through three goals: strengthen the quality of and increase access to prevention services for people at risk, and prevention, care, and treatment services for people affected by or living with HIV, these include demand reduction activities such as providing Medicated Assisted Therapy; support the provision of sustainable HIV/AIDS services through strengthening systems for people’s health and related welfare; and broaden and strengthen the national response to HIV/AIDS to support people’s health and related welfare.

D. Conclusion

The GVN is aware of the country’s drug threat and increasing domestic drug problem and continues to develop its cooperation with foreign law enforcement to assist in its counter-narcotics efforts. During 2010, as in previous years, the GVN made progress with ongoing and new initiatives aimed at the law enforcement and social problems, e.g., drug abuse, organized crime, HIV/AIDS, stemming from the illegal drug trade. The GVN continued to show a willingness to take unilateral action against drugs and drug trafficking, but also requested assistance from foreign law enforcement organizations, although on a case-by-case basis. U.S.-GVN operational cooperation continues to grow but could further improve if Vietnam adopts legislation permitting a binding bilateral agreement necessary to facilitate joint investigation and development of drug cases. Until there is such an agreement between the United States and Vietnam, cooperative drug enforcement will remain limited.


Zambia

Zambia is not a major producer or exporter of illegal drugs, nor is Zambia a significant transit route for drug trafficking. Cannabis is the only illicit drug that is cultivated in large quantities in Zambia, primarily by small-holder farmers. It is consumed locally and exported regionally and to Europe. Small amounts of other illicit drugs are brought into Zambia for domestic consumption or for transshipment to other markets.

The DEC (Drug Enforcement Commission) works closely with other Zambian law enforcement and health agencies on drug control and treatment programs throughout the country and has a record of good cooperation with the U.S. Government. As is true of the Zambian government generally, the DEC is hampered by a lack of resources and capacity. Zambia is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention, as well as to the UN Convention against Corruption and the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime. A 1931 extradition treaty between the United States and the UK governs extraditions from Zambia.

The DEC reported a 260 percent increase in the amount of cannabis seized in the first nine months of 2010. In the same time period, the DEC reported seizures of 537 kilograms of khat (an 82 percent increase), 21 kilograms of ephedrine, up from almost no ephedrine seized in 2009, and de minimus amounts of cocaine, heroin, and other drugs. 3,952 people have been arrested and prosecuted for drug-related crimes thus far in 2010, a 75 percent increase over the same time period in 2009.

The DEC credits the increase in illicit drug seizures and arrests to its ongoing incentive program to reward officers and informants at the conclusion of successful operations. The Commission also focused its efforts on destroying cannabis fields in partnership with tribal chiefs and village leaders in 2010.

The Zambian Government (GRZ) works closely with its neighbors and countries in the region on drug and drug trafficking issues through Joint Permanent Commissions on Defense and Security and regional organizations such as the Southern Africa Regional Police Chiefs Co-operation Group (SARPCCO) and the South African Narcotics Bureau. The GRZ also collaborates with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime, the International Narcotics Control Board, and Her Majesty’s Customs & Excise.

Cannabis is the most commonly consumed drug in Zambia. The National Education Campaign Division (NECD) of the DEC reported that the number of Zambians receiving drug treatment rose to 446 in 2010, an almost 100 percent rise over last year. The NECD attributes this change to an increase in drug abuse in Zambia, primarily among people age 11 to 37, and to the effectiveness of the NECD itself in reaching and counseling drug abusers.

Zambia does not have dedicated drug treatment facilities. The DEC works with hospitals to provide treatment. NECD provide counseling and treatment and admission is managed by health professionals, hospitals and clinics throughout the country.

Although the DEC has played a role in Zambia’s anti-corruption campaign, these efforts have had no direct impact on narcotics control. No evidence has emerged to suggest that current government officials are involved in the production or trafficking of drugs, although several members of parliament, including the government chief whip, have previously been mentioned in allegations of drug trafficking. The Zambian Government does not encourage drug trafficking or the laundering of the proceeds of drug trafficking as a matter of government policy.

The U.S. Government provides training assistance to Zambian law enforcement agencies, including the DEC, through the International Law Enforcement Academies in Gaborone, Botswana and Roswell, New Mexico. From 2008 to 2010, a Resident Legal Advisor was stationed in Zambia. This experienced Federal Prosecutor provided technical assistance to Zambian criminal justice sector officials, particularly in the area of gender-based violence.

[This is a mobile copy of Country Reports - Somalia through Zambia]