Friday, 26 June 2009

Bulgaria In The Thick Of Drug Trafficking

Drugs and crime are always related and this is no exception. Bulgaria it seems is in the thick of things when it comes to these two links businesses. It is a lucrative trade without much opposition here, as I believe it has the support of many figures in political circles here – They wouldn’t be where they are without it of course.

Bulgaria In The Thick Of Drug Trafficking
The United Nations (UN) singled out Bulgaria and to some extent Turkey as the primary supplier of amphetamine trafficked into the Middle East in the form of counterfeit Captagon packaging.

The amount of tablets in the region swelled sixfold between 2003 and 2007, with almost 14 metric tons seized in Saudi Arabia in 2007 alone, which is 30 per cent of all amphetamine stimulants seized across the world and more than data from the US and China combined. These are the findings of the latest report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) published in Washington and Vienna yesterday.

While heroine, cocaine and marijuana markets are stagnating and shrinking, synthetic drugs markets are exploding.

Mapping out amphetamine smuggling routes from Europe to the Middle East, the report shows that Bulgaria is the largest trafficking hub. Pills have also been seized on the supply line via Syria, Jordan, the United Arabic Emirates and Yemen.

The UN data matches the conclusions of a report by Bulgarian public policy think-tank Centre for the Study of Democracy (CSD) and reports by the State Agency for National Security.

The Bulgarian Interior Ministry often pursues drug lords linked to Serbian organised crime who are protected by the counter-intelligence units, according to the CDS study. High-ranking Bulgarian officials of the special security services say drug labs have been moved to Turkey and the Middle East to mitigate risk, the report said.

A report by the Bulgarian parliamentary interior committee quoted statements by SANS that some of the money from synthetic drug sales has been used by criminal groups to finance terrorist groups in the Middle East.

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