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NEWS AND EVENTS
June 14, 2017
INFORMATION ON DRUG SITUATION IN THE REPUBLIC OF UZBEKISTAN IN 2016
In 2016, work was continued in the sphere of reduction in demand and supply of drugs in accordance with the counter-drug strategy defined by the Program of comprehensive measures to counter drug abuse and illicit trafficking for 2016-2020.

Attention was paid to improving the regulatory framework in the field of regulating the circulation of narcotic drugs and providing drug addiction treatment, improving the material and technical base and human resources of special units of law enforcement authorities and the drug addiction treatment service.



COUNTERACTION TO ILLICIT DRUG TRAFFICKING

As a result of organizational, practical, operational and preventive measures taken, law enforcement authorities of the Republic in 2016 revealed 6,646 facts of crimes related to drug trafficking (hereinafter in parentheses are data for the same period last year – 6,648).



Of the total number of drug-related crimes detected, 2,798 (3,017) constitute crimes related to the sale of drugs, 645 (709) – with smuggling, 1,482 (1,301) – with illicit cultivation of narcotic plants, 145 (125) – with den maintenance of drug brothels and 1,576 (1,496) – other drug-related crimes

3 tons 542.4 kg (2 tons 510.1 kg) of narcotic drugs were seized from illegal circulation, including 107.76 (147.92) kg of heroin, 1 ton 446.82 (882.25) kg of opium, 883.23 (1 t 25.05) kg of marijuana, 241.15 (250.21) kg of hashish, 862.84 (204.66) kg of koknar, 579.1 (8.6) gr. of new psychoactive substances (NPS) and other synthetic drugs, as well as 19 thousand 277 (7 thousand184) pills of psychotropic substances.

The detectability of the facts of derelict (“anonymized”) smuggling significantly increased. So, if in 2015 totally 50 facts were found and 194 kg of derelict drugs (including 101 kg of opium, 27.3 kg of heroin, 57.4 kg of hashish, about 7 kg of koknar and 1.3 kg of marijuana) were seized, then in 2016, 86 cases were revealed, and the rate of drugs seizure increased more than fourfold, amounting to 841.4 kg (including 749.6 kg of opium, about 16 kg of heroin, 46.1 kg of hashish, 29.3 kg of koknar and 0.4 kg of marijuana). In most cases, smugglers dig drugs into the ground, prepackaged and wrapped in plastic bags, or leave “caches” in the border area.

For example: - during the 2ndquarter of 2016, 24 “caches” were found on the border territories of Surkhandarya province, 327 kg of opium, 10.8 kg of hashish and 1.6 kg of heroin were confiscated. Only in one of the cases, in the hot pursuit it was managed to detain the “cache maker” - Afghan citizen Ubaidullo Omon Ugli (born in 1990), detained while attempting to smuggle 12 kg of opium across Amudarya River.

In 2016, 110 (138) citizens of foreign states were detained for committing crimes related to illegal drug trafficking on the territory of the Republic of Uzbekistan. The majority of people are citizens of: Afghanistan - 24 (33), Tajikistan - 27 (27), Russia 19 (24), Kazakhstan - 14 (9), Kyrgyzstan - 9 (8). 340 (364) kg of narcotic drugs were withdrawn or 10% (14.5%) of its total number of drug seizures in the country. In addition, 2,461 (1,422) pills of psychotropic substances and 45.8 gr. (7,800 l and 89.8 gr) of precursors were confiscated.

For example: - On January 6, 2016 in Surkhandarya province, when an attempt was made to illegally cross the state border and smuggle about 30 kg of opium, the citizen of Afghanistan Gulmamat Khudoiberdi Ugli (born in 1985) was detained; - On March 9, 2016 in Tashkent province, while trying to illegally cross the state border and smuggle 4 kg of heroin, the citizen of Kyrgyzstan Zh.A.Nazyrov (born in 1985) was detained; - On June 12, 2016 during the operational activities in Kokand city, Fergana province, the Tajik citizen Kh.A.Obidov (born in 1960) was detained, who was found and seized about 1 kg of heroin.

In order to identify and suppress the facts of illicit cultivation of narcotic plants and to stop drug supply channels to the Republic from neighboring countries, law enforcement authorities carried out a two-stage comprehensive large-scale operation “Black Poppy-2016”.

As a result of organizational and preventive and operational-search activities, 1,070 (1,049) facts of illicit cultivation of narcotic plants were identified. Illegal crops with a total area of 4,933 (5,132) sq. m were destroyed.

In the course of the operation, 2,659 (2687) criminal cases related to illicit drug trafficking were initiated, 1 t 321 kg (621 kg) of narcotic drugs were seized, including 3.4 (0.76) kg of heroin, 49.3 (28, 8) kg of opium, 45.9 (8.1) kg of hashish, 462.2 (437.4) kg of marijuana, 760 (145.5) kg of koknar.

As part of organization of the month’s campaign dedicated to the International Day against Drugs on June 26, an event was organized with the invitation of representatives of the diplomatic corps, the public and the media to burn narcotic drugs seized by law enforcement authorities of the Republic from illicit trafficking. In the stoves 1 t 438 kg of narcotic drugs were destroyed, including 145 kg of heroin, 655 kg of opium, 496 kg of marijuana, 115 kg of hashish, 27 kg of koknar, and a large quantity of narcotic drugs in the form of pills and solutions.



COUNTERACTION TO NEW TYPES OF PSYCHOACTIVE SUBSTANCES

According to the law enforcement authorities of the Republic, in 2016 in Uzbekistan 43 facts of illegal trafficking in new psychoactive substances were revealed, 579.1 gr. of various types of NPS and other synthetic drugs were seized. In some cases, substances not included in the list of substances banned in Uzbekistan were seized (ADB-FUBINACA, 5F-PB-22, 5F-PB-22 Ethly Ester analog, 5-Fluoro-AMB, AB-FU- BINAÑA, MDMB-CHMICA, NM-2201, UR-144 N-(3-chloropentyl) analog).

Analysis of illicit drug trafficking in Uzbekistan testifies to the absence at present of prerequisites for the mass distribution of NPS on the territory of the Republic, in view of the significant share of Afghan drugs (heroin, opium and hashish) seized from illicit trafficking.

In order to prevent the spread of NPS in Uzbekistan and to take preventive measures, the interdepartmental Working Group, established on the basis of the National Information and Analytical Center for Drug Control, continued to improve existing legislation in the field of countering illicit drug trafficking. Based on the results of the work carried out, the draft law “On introducing changes and amendments to some legislative acts of the Republic of Uzbekistan” was prepared.



DRUG ADDICTION TREATMENT SITUATION

According to the data of the drug addiction treatment service of the Ministry of Health over the past 10 years, the country has seen a positive trend in the development of the drug addiction treatment situation in its main indicators.

Thus, the number of drug addicts who are on dispensary registry for the period 2007-2016 decreased from 19,868 to 10,505.

The number of drug-dependents of opium groups – 5,420 (2015 – 7,977) or 51.6% (60.3%) of the total number of registered persons continued to decrease. The number of heroin addicts – 4,063 (6554) or 38.7% (49.6%) significantly decreased.

The incidence of cannabinoid abuse increased to 45.1% (36.9%) of the total number of drug users.

Analysis of the sex and age characteristics of drug addicts indicates an increase in the number of patients aged 40 years and older - 58% (56.1%), the proportion of individuals in the age group 20-39 years - 42% (43.9%).

The number of drug addicts who injected drugs decreased to 1,782 (3,825) or 17% (28.9%) among the total number registered.



In 2016, there was a decrease in the number of drug addicts who underwent specialized treatment in the drug addiction treatment institutions of the Republic – 2,220 (2473).

The proportion of opiate-dependent individuals among patients treated under inpatient conditions decreased - 60.2% (71.4%), with 23.3% (15%) increase in the proportion of cannabinoid dependent.

According to the data of the Main Bureau of Forensic Medical Examinations, 1 death case of an overdose of narcotic drugs was registered in the Republic.

According to the Republican AIDS Center in 2016, 3,983 (4,171) of new HIV infections were detected, 209 (260) of them – among injecting drug users.



TRAINING FOR PERSONNEL OF DRUG ADDICTION TREATMENT SERVICE

In order to train personnel in 2016, 126 doctors were trained at the Department of Drug Addiction Treatment and Adolescent Psychopathology of Tashkent Institute for Advanced Training of Physicians (TashIATP): 37 specialists completed their specialization, 44 were trained in psychotherapy and rehabilitation of drug addicts, and 45 passed in general and topical improvement in drug addiction treatment.

To improve the quality of drug addiction treatment, the staff of the Department of Drug Addiction Treatment of TashIATP developed and approved by the order of the Ministry of Health ¹151 dated 28.03.2016 “Protocols for the treatment of major drug addiction diseases at the level of district drug addiction treatment offices”.

In addition, guidelines “Determining the timing of compulsory treatment of patients with alcoholism, drug addiction and substance abuse in specialized treatment and prophylactic institutions of the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Uzbekistan” were developed, approved and published in the state and Russian languages, which are distributed among drug treatment doctors.

The national instruction “Organization of drug addiction treatment” was published in the state language, which was transferred to the organizational and methodological departments of drug addiction dispensaries and distributed to drug treatment doctors of all provinces.



PREVENTIVE WORK

In the framework of the primary prevention of drug use, drug treatment doctors of medical and preventive institutions of the Republic read 7,117 lectures in various groups of the population, held 2,213 seminars, made 579 broadcasts in the mass media (newspapers, television, radio).

On the website of the Ministry of Health www.sixat-salomatlik.uz there are articles “Prevention of drug addiction”, “Prevention of drug addiction among adolescents”, “Types of drug addiction prevention”, “Signs of drug addiction”, “Drug addiction as a social problem”.

In the public education system, together with the health authorities, 4,3 thousand lectures on the prevention of drug use, 4,1 thousand – on tobacco smoking and 6 thousand – on alcoholism were conducted.

Within the framework of international cooperation, the Ministry of Public Education carried out work to implement the “Strong Family” program under the UNODC GLOK01 project “Prevention of abuse of psychoactive substances, HIV/AIDS and crime among the youth through family skills training programs”.

The program aims to prevent behavioral problems in adolescence, including abuse of psychoactive substances, as well as strengthening parenting skills and family relationships.

In five pilot schools, selected by the Ministry, national trainers conducted classes with 80 families of students in the 7th grade.

Interim (preliminary) evaluation of the effectiveness of the program, based on the questioning of parents and adolescents before and after participation in the program, showed positive changes in a number of interfamily and social indicators.

In order to strengthen the role of makhallas (local governing bodies) in preventive work, issues of prevention of crime and drug addiction are included in the thematic plan of training courses for the development of skills of employees of citizens’ self-government bodies at the Tashkent regional khokimiyat (city hall).

As part of the implementation of preventive measures on the International Day against Drug Abuse in the provinces of the country, theatrical performances, sports competitions, meetings, lectures, question and answer evenings were held.

With the assistance of the regional commissions for drug control in Tashkent, Nukus cities and regional centers, entertainment and sports performances for young people were organized.

The stage shows about the problems of drug addiction were performed in makhallas, parks of culture and recreation.

In 474 summer recreation camps, more than 5.4 thousand themed meetings and 526 competitions, as well as 567 sports competitions were organized. Video materials of preventive orientation were shown.

The Ministry of Higher and Secondary Special Education jointly with “Kamolot” Youth Movement carried out competitions in 7 sports under the motto “Youth against drugs”, in which 427 thousand young people took part.

A purposeful explanatory and preventive work was conducted with representatives of the Uzbek Diaspora, students and migrant workers. With the involvement of the Diaspora and student activists, citizens were informed about the legal and medical consequences of illicit drug trafficking and consumption.

The events of the month’s campaign were widely covered in the mass media. The central channels demonstrated thematic programs (newscasts, talk shows) and social videos. In print media, more than 500 feature articles were published.



INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION

In 2016, under the coordination of the National Information and Analytical Center for Drug Control (NIACDC), work was carried out within the legal framework for bilateral and multilateral cooperation in the field of drug control.

Measures have been taken to further strengthen the material and technical base of the competent bodies of the Republic within the framework of the implementation of the Amendments to the Uzbek-American Intergovernmental Agreement on Drug Control and Enforcement of 2001.

With the assistance of the Italian Embassy in Uzbekistan and the UNODC Regional Office in Central Asia on April 11-15, 2016, in Tashkent a training course “Countering drugs in the Internet space” was organized for representatives of the MIA and SCC of the Republic.

In order to establish a practical mechanism for the exchange of operationally meaningful information between law enforcement authorities of Uzbekistan and Slovakia in the sphere of illicit trafficking in narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances and strengthening control over precursors, an Agreement was worked out for signing between the Government of the Republic of Uzbekistan and the Government of the Slovak Republic on cooperation in countering illicit trafficking in narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and their precursors (signed on September 20, 2016 in Tashkent).

In accordance with the Agreement on Cooperation between NIACDC and the Representative Office of the Foundation named after K.Adenauer in Uzbekistan in August and September 2016, training events in Italy and Germany were held on the topic “German-Central Asian Dialogue on Security Policy and Countering Organized Crime”.

Besides, together with the Foundation and the Ministry of Public Education, warning and prevention booklets have been published and disseminated in general education schools in order to raise students’ awareness of the risks and negative consequences of drug addiction.

Within the framework of Uzbekistan’s chairmanship of the SCO in February, March and April 2016, meetings of the Working Groups of Experts of the Meeting of Heads of Competent Authorities of the SCO Member States with powers to counter illicit drug trafficking were organized in Beijing.

During these expert meetings, the drafts of the SCO’s Counter-drug Strategy for 2017-2022 and the Program of Action for its implementation prepared by the Uzbek side were prepared for signing.

In the line of interaction with CARICC, Director and Head of the international department of NIACDC, took part in the meeting of the Council of National Coordinators of the CARICC Member States held on March 30, 2016, in Almaty, Kazakhstan during which the current issues of organization of the Center’s activities were considered.

In order to increase the material, technical and expert potential of the competent ministries and departments of the country, a number of international projects of the UNODC and the OSCE have been implemented aimed at countering illicit drug trafficking and preventing their abuse.

Law enforcement authorities and other agencies have been provided with technical devices and equipment worth over 200 thousand USD in the course of the UNODC project “Countering illicit trafficking of Afghan opiates through the northern route by strengthening the capacity of main border points and establishing border cooperation offices” - XAC/K22 and the “Global Program of UNODC and the World Customs Organization for Control of Container Transportation” - GLOG-80.

In 2016, in cooperation with the UNODC and the Embassy of Japan in Tashkent, the implementation of a new project “Countering the smuggling of Afghan drugs in Uzbekistan through establishment of interagency mobile groups” in the framework of the UNODC Program for Central Asian states for 2015-2019 with a budget of 2.5 mln. USD.

Training courses, seminars and trainings were organized in the framework of projects for the improvement of the qualification of the staff of the authorized bodies of Uzbekistan. In 2016, 204 employees of relevant ministries and departments of the Republic took part in trainings, courses and seminars on countering illicit drug trafficking, drug prevention and treatment.



The National Center on Drug Control under the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Uzbekistan


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