Turkey is a major transit route for Southwest Asian opiates to Europe and serves as a staging area for major narcotics traffickers and brokers. Turkish law enforcement organizations focus their efforts on stemming the traffic of drugs and intercepting precursor chemicals. The Turkish National Police (TNP), under Interior Ministry control, is responsible for security in large urban areas. The Jandarma, paramilitary forces under joint Interior Ministry and military control, is responsible for policing rural areas. The Jandarma is also responsible for specific border sectors where smuggling is common; however, the military has overall responsibility for border control. Turkish law enforcement forces cooperate closely with European and U.S. agencies. While most of the heroin trafficked via Turkey is marketed in Western Europe, some heroin and opium also is smuggled from Turkey to the U.S., but not in quantities sufficient to have a significant impact on the U.S. There is no appreciable cultivation of illicit narcotics in Turkey other than marijuana grown primarily for domestic consumption. There is no known diversion from Turkey's licit opium poppy cultivation and pharmaceutical morphine production program. Turkey is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.
II. Status of Country
Turkey is a major transshipment point. Turkey is also a base of operations for international narcotics traffickers and associates trafficking in opium, morphine base, heroin, precursor chemicals and other drugs. Opium, morphine base, and heroin are smuggled from Afghanistan to Iran. Both morphine base and heroin are then smuggled from Iran to Turkey and ultimately to Western Europe. A small amount of opium and heroin is trafficked to the U.S. via Turkey. Turkish law enforcement forces are strongly committed to disrupting narcotics trafficking. The Turkish National Police (TNP) remains Turkey's most proactive counter narcotics force, with the Jandarma and Customs continuing to play a significant role. Turkish authorities continue to seize large amounts of heroin and precursor chemicals. It is estimated that multi-ton amounts of heroin are smuggled through Turkey each month.
Turkey is one of the two traditional licit opium-growing countries recognized by the USG and the International Narcotics Control Board (TNCB). Opium for pharmaceuticals is cultivated and refined in Turkey under strict domestic controls and in accordance with all international treaty obligations. There is no appreciable illicit drug cultivation in Turkey other than cannabis grown primarily for domestic consumption. 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 other countries in the Middle East.
III. Country Actions Against Drugs In 2006
Policy Initiatives. The Government of Turkey devotes significant financial and human resources to counter narcotics activities. 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. The Turkish International Academy against Drugs and Organized Crime (TADOC), established under the Turkish National Police (TNP), continues to be a key agency leading the fight against drug abuse in Turkey. In 2004, TNP increased the number of drug training and prevention units it previously established in various provinces to cover most parts of Turkey. These units conducted intensive training programs for parents, teachers and students in these provinces, making a major contribution to the GOT's drug prevention efforts.
Accomplishments. TADOC organized 89 training programs for local and regional law enforcement officers in 2006. A total of 384 foreign officers were trained at TADOC this year, including officers from the Balkans, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, Jordan, United Arab Emirates, Montenegro, Kosovo, Azerbaijan, Macedonia, Malta, Germany, Gambia, Morocco, Egypt, Lebanon, Sudan, Guinea, and Pakistan. 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. Additionally, TADOC conducted training in several foreign countries, including Montenegro, Romania, Macedonia, Syria, and Yemen.
TADOC, with the assistance of DEA, also provided precursor chemical interdiction training to approximately 67 law enforcement representatives from Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan as part of a UNODC/INCB sponsored initiative, code named Operation Transshipment.
Law Enforcement Efforts. In December 2005, the Turkish National Police discovered an Ecstasy and captagon laboratory in Adana, Turkey. Turkish National Police officers seized 300,000 Ecstasy tablets and 1,080,000 captagon tablets from the laboratory. Full year drug seizure statistics for Turkey are as follows:
Heroin 10,283 kg Morphine Base 529 kg Cannabis 23,884 kg Opium 440 kg AA 6,317 liters Captagon 19,971,625 tablets Ecstasy 2,492,200 tablets
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. Turkey ratified the UN Corruption Convention in November 2006.
Agreements and Treaties. 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 Transnational Organized Crime and its protocols on migrant smuggling, trafficking in persons, and illegal manufacturing and trafficking in firearms. The U.S. and Turkey cooperate in law enforcement matters under a 1981 treaty on extradition and mutual assistance in legal matters.
Cultivation/Production. Illicit drug cultivation, primarily cannabis, is minor and has no impact on the United States. The Turkish Grain Board strictly controls licit opium poppy cultivation quite successfully, with no apparent diversion into the illicit market.
Drug Flow/Transit. Turkey remains a major route and staging area for the flow of heroin to 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 and from Turkey. Afghanistan is the source of most of the opiates reaching Turkey. Morphine base and heroin are smuggled overland 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. Some criminal elements in Turkey reportedly have interests in heroin laboratories operating in Iran near the Iranian-Turkish border. Turkish-based traffickers control much of the heroin marketed to Western Europe.
Turkish authorities reported an increase in synthetic drug seizures throughout Turkey beginning in 2005. Turkish law enforcement has seen an increase in synthetic drug production, primarily amphetamines (captagon).
Demand Reduction. While drug abuse remains modest in scale in Turkey compared to other countries, the number of addicts reportedly 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. Seven Alcohol and Substance Abuse Treatment and Education Clinics (AMATEM), which serve as regional and drug treatment centers, have been established. Due to lack of funds, only one of the centers focuses on drug prevention as well as treatment. The most recent clinic was opened in Ankara in 2004 and will serve as the countrywide coordinating center for drug and alcohol treatment and education. The Health Ministry has not conducted a drug abuse survey since 1995 due to lack of resources. The Ministry of Health is reportedly considering conducting a survey in 2007.
IV. U.S. Policy Initiatives and Programs
Policy Initiatives. Since fiscal year 1999, the U.S. Government has extended $500,000 annually in assistance. In January or February 2007, the U.S. Government anticipates spending approximately $57,000 in previously-obligated funds on bringing DEA trainers to Turkey to conduct a course for counternarcotics commanders, with Turkish and Afghan law enforcement officers. Trainees will likely consist of between 15 Afghan law enforcement personnel and 5 Turkish police officials. The goal of this project is to enhance the investigative abilities of both Turkish and Afghan investigators, to increase their willingness to cooperate internationally on joint cases, and to build relationships between the two countries' law enforcement agencies.
Bilateral Cooperation. DEA reports excellent cooperation with Turkish officials. Turkish counternarcotics forces are both professional and technically sophisticated.
The Road Ahead. U.S. policy remains to strengthen Turkey's ability to combat narcotics trafficking, money-laundering and financial crimes.
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|Title Annotation:||Europe and Central Asia|
|Publication:||International Narcotics Control Strategy Report|
|Article Type:||Country overview|
|Date:||Jan 1, 2007|