Baku, Azerbaijan, Sept. 22
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
Iranian police have neutralized 60 drug smugglers during armed conflicts in the first six months of the current Iranian fiscal year (March 21-Sept. 22).
Also 175,000 people (including 140,000 drug smugglers and 35,000 drug addicts) were arrested during the period, General Ali Moayedi, the head of the anti-drug division of Iran's police said, without unveiling further details, Iran's official IRIB news agency reported Sept. 22.
The number of arrests indicates an increase by 36 percent compared the same period of last year.
About 237 metric tons of various drugs including 190 metric tons of opium, 35 metric tons of hashish, 5.4 metric tons of heroin, 5.3 metric tons of morphine and one metric tons of methamphetamine were seized during the six-month period (March 21-Sept. 22).
Police launched 650 operations against the drug smugglers during the six-month period, Moayedi said, adding that about 80 drug-related armed conflicts took place.
Iran is situated on a major drug route between Afghanistan and Europe, as well as the Gulf States. The Islamic Republic shares about 900 kilometers of common border with Afghanistan, over which 74 percent of opium is smuggled.
It was reported that some 500 metric tons of drugs were seized in the country during the 12-month period from March 21, 2013 to March 21, 2014.
The fight against drugs annually costs Iran about $1 billion, according to the official estimates. The statistics also say there are about two million drug users in Iran.