Federal Drug Control Service assists major drug confiscation in Afghanistan

The Russian Federal Drug Control Service supplied intelligence information that helped Afghan drug control officers and U.S. security services seize a large amount of drugs in northern Afghanistan.

"An operation held in the Badakhshan province capital seized 180 kilograms of heroin, 1,500 kilograms of morphine, 1,200 kilograms of opium, 200 kilograms of opium poppy seeds and 700 kilograms of precursors. Six drug laboratories were destroyed," the service told Interfax.

"Operative information the Federal Service had conveyed to Afghanistan was used to prepare and hold the operation," it said.

"There had been joint thorough preparations involving a task force of the Federal Drug Control Service led by Deputy Director Col. Gen. Mikhail Kiyko," the service said.

Service Representative to Afghanistan Alexei Milovanov and U.S. DEA employees took part in the work of the operation staff in Kunduz. Afghan Interior Ministry anti-drug police intelligence chief Lt. Gen. Mirza Saefi chaired the operative staff.

"The search for routes along which the drugs from the destroyed laboratories were sent to Central Asia and Russia continues jointly with Afghan and U.S. colleagues," the service said.

The service's report published on August 31 quoted Service Director Viktor Ivanov who said that Russian and U.S. security services had regular joint operations to stop global drug trafficking operations.

"More than 10 operations have taken place within the past two years. There have been seven joint operations with the U.S. DEA in Afghanistan. More than nine tons of drugs were destroyed," Ivanov said.

"Drug mafia revenues keep growing. Specialists estimate them at $800 billion per annum, including about $250 billion in Afghanistan," Ivanov said.

Russia is concerned about the growing Afghan heroin shipments across Central Asian republics.

The Federal Drug Control Service opened an office in Afghanistan to coordinate measures against drug trafficking.

Ivanov said earlier that Russia had become the No. 1 consumer of heroin in the world. The service says that up to 100,000 Russians die of narcotics each year.

Ivanov said in June, citing the latest research of the Federal Drug Control Service, that 8.5 million Russians were consuming narcotics either regularly or sporadically. Some 18.5 million Russians have tested narcotics at least once in their lives.

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