Damascus, SANA – Interior Ministry organized Wednesday a central national symposium on the occasion of International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, which is marked on June 26 every year.
Delivering a speech during the event, Interior Minister Mohammed al-Shaar said that drugs trafficking pose a serious challenge to criminal justice apparatus around the world being an organized crime committed by dangerous criminal networks and gangs which exploit millions of victims to get billions of dollars beyond borders.
He added that today’s event stresses Syria’s commitment to join efforts exerted by the international community in order to eliminate this phenomenon and reduce its negative economic, social and health effects on individuals and society as a whole.
“Syria is clean of drugs planting, manufacturing and marketing and is still at the forefront of drugs-free countries that do not have an alarming problem with drugs. But its geographical location made it a transit country for drugs,” he noted.
Minister al-Shaar said that the phenomenon of drug trafficking has escalated partially by the terrorist war waged on Syria as the majority of armed terrorist groups resorted to drug smuggling and pushing them among the young people to finance their terrorist acts.
He highlighted the Ministry’s efforts to qualify cadres and enhance their knowledge about drugs, the smugglers’ methods and means of effective prevention, adding that, throughout 2016, several drug trafficking networks were dismantled, many illicit drug dealers were arrested and large amounts of narcotics were confiscated.
According to statistics, the narcotics seized in 2017 amounted to 612 kg, 923 kg of hashish (cannabis), 11 kg of heroin, 30 grams of cocaine, 1,07 kg of powdered cannabis, 44 grams of marijuana and 843,504 Captagon pills, more than one million psychiatric drugs and 90 grams of raw materials to manufacture narcotics.
The minister underlined the key role of popular organizations, civil community, and educational and religious institutions in eradicating this phenomenon, with stress laid on the family’s important contribution through bringing up well-educated and fortified generations.
Later on, a photo exhibition was inaugurated showcasing different photos to raise awareness about the negative impact of drugs on health, material and social aspects of life.