The main directions of drug prevention policy of Uzbekistan and its implementation
Uzbekistan today countered the threat of drugs all the social, economic and political resources of the state. As part of the monitoring of drug use the country applies more balanced approach aimed at drug demand reduction and prevention of illicit trafficking.
State Commission on Drug Control had approved and has been implementing comprehensive Programme of measures to combat drug abuse and trafficking in 2011-2015.
In the framework the Program measured to further strengthening the material-technical and human resource capacities of law enforcement agencies, the modernization and development of the drug treatment service, enhancing international cooperation in combating drug trafficking, conducting targeted work on prevention of drug addiction have been implemented.
Combating drug trafficking
As a result of targeted measures to identify and prevent drug trafficking channels as well as comprehensive operations to combat drug trafficking in 2014, the law enforcement bodies of Uzbekistan revealed 6698 (in 2013 - 7680) cased of drug-related crimes, including 3062 (3772) – sales, 607 (623) – smuggling, 1320 (1491) - illicit cultivation of narcotic plants and 1709 (1794) - of other drug-related crimes.
Drug-related crimes revealed in Uzbekistan in 2013-2014
From illegal trafficking there were seized 2 tons 298 kg (2 tons 326 kg) of drugs, including heroin - 106.5 kg. (121.6 kg.), opium - 881.9 kg. (851.3 kg.), marijuana - 802.9 kg. (873.5 kg.), hashish - 100 kg. (143.3 kg.) and kuknar - 406.3 kg (336.3 kg.).
Seizures of drugs in 2014 by regions of Uzbekistan
The main efforts of law enforcement agencies have been directed at prevention and suppression of the criminal activities and inter-regional drug traffickers, who had set the stable channels of drug smuggling across the state border.
- on 18 February 2014 in Termez district of Surkhandarya region a citizen of Afghanistan was detained while trying to illegally cross the state border and smuggling of 64.6 kg of opium from Afghanistan via the Amu Darya River with a rubber boat;
- on 3 and 13 March 2014 during the special operational activity in the territory of Bulungur district of Samarkand region on curbing the activities of criminal groups, which organized the transport of drugs from Tajikistan, 45 kg of opium was found and seized;
- v on11 April 11 2014 during the special operational activity on drug-smuggling interdiction from Tajikistan in the territory of Zangiata district of Tashkent region 5.7 kg of heroin and about 7 kg of opium were seized
- on 22 May 22 2014 the activity of a criminal group organized the smuggling of drugs from Tajikistan to the Samarkand region of Uzbekistan was suppressed. 32.5 kg of opium was found from criminals and seized;
- on 23 October 2014 during the operational activities in the Surkhandarya region, 12 kg of heroin and 10.2 kg of opium were seized at the attempt to transportation in the territory Altynsay district.
A strict border control and inspection of vehicles are being carried out in order to improve efficiency of detection and suppression of drug trafficking channels across the state border.
- on 10 May 2014 in the border area of Surkhandarya region, 2.5 kg opium buried in the ground was found and seized;
- on 8 October 2014 in Bukhara region during the inspection of a freight train en route in the direction of "Turkmenistan - Uzbekistan" 5.8 kg of heroin was found under the car and seized;
- on 19 December 2014 during the inspection of a freight train en route in the direction of “Tajikistan – Lithuania” transit through the territory of Uzbekistan at the customs post “Bekabad” of Tashkent region, 6.8 kg of heroin was found in the car and seized.
It was carried out a two-stage comprehensive large-scale operation 'Black Poppy – 2014' in Uzbekistan in order to detect and prevent the illicit cultivation of narcotic plants, as well as prevent of offenses related to drug trafficking.
As a result of organizational preventive and operational search activities 1125 (1223) cases of illegal narcotic plant cultivation were revealed. Illicit crops on a total area of 6692 (10356) sq.m were destroyed.
During the operation 'Black Poppy - 2014' 2900 (3101) drug-related crimes were revealed and 852 kg (785 kg) of drugs were seized.
Enhancement of information-analytical and technical capacity of law enforcement agencies
In the past year carried out work on enhancing the information-analytical and technical capacity of law enforcement bodies of Uzbekistan in the fight against drug trafficking.
To improve the mechanism for the exchange of information and the organization of its central processing, developed a single database on the basis of modern information and analytical software «IBM i2», provided in the framework of the international projects.
The program had been installed in analytical departments of the law enforcement bodies of the Uzbekistan, and also a simplified form of the database had been developed.
The trainings on the methodologies for the analysis of operational information through computer systems for employees of analytical department of the Interior Ministry, National Security Service, Borderguard Service of National Security Service, State Customs Committee and the General Prosecutor's Office have been held at the National Center for Drug Control.
Currently, National interagency database system (similar to the law enforcement systems of the EU countries) is under construction.
In order to improve detection of drug smuggling across the state border, measures to improve the technical capacity of the competent authorities of the country has been taken.
Modern facilities of technical control, including large stationary and mobile scanners equipped a number of the checkpoints of the Republic of Uzbekistan.
Prevalence, patterns and trends of drug abuse
The analysis of the drug situation in Uzbekistan in 2014 attests to the continuing positive trend in the key epidemiological indicators.
The average-country indicator of the drug abuse initial incidence continued to decrease for 3,8 (4,0- 2013).
The number of drug addicts registered for dispensary observation decreased for 1353 and amounted to 14692 (16045) compared to the previous year.
Primary drug addiction per 100 thousand population for the period of 2005-2014
The number of drug addicts, who inject drugs, decreased and amounted to 5110 (6809) or 34.8 percent (42.4 percent) out of total number of registered addicts.
The number of injecting drug users in the period of 2005-2014
Prevention of drug addiction
During the reported year, much attention was paid to preventive work, the main objectives of which were reduction of demand for drugs and other psychoactive substances, decrease of number of persons belonging to the group of high risk of involvement into drug use.
There were organised regional workshops for deputy directors of schools on spiritual and educational work, leading trainers and teachers of the subject "Basics of Healthy Way of Life", in order to increase the effectiveness of educational and explanatory work with students. The issues of prevention of neglect, delinquency, spread of drug addiction and HIV were widely covered at the seminars.
In order to provide methodological guidance, the Ministry of Public Education jointly with the Republican Information Centre and the Tashkent Islamic University organised training courses for 325 experts on spiritual and moral education.
The Drug Dispensaries of the Republic conducted 183 workshops for teachers on the 18-hour program of prevention and early detection of addiction to psychoactive substances among children and adolescents.
The topical and sportive sections, which involved more than 482.1 thousand children - 10.8 percent of all students, function as a part of leisure activities at secondary schools.
Totally, in order to promote healthy lifestyles, 6.5 thousand sportive sections, which involved more than 1.6 million minors, function in schools and mahallas. The total number of children involved into sport has increased by 12.3 percent.
The ministries, departments and public organizations took measures of primary prevention of drug use among the various segments of the population, especially the youth.
In particular, the narcologist doctors delivered 7338 lectures, conducted 3087 seminars, appeared 632 times in the mass media.
The drugs treatment institutions of Uzbekistan provided 2526 consultations around the clock via “hotlines” to the population.
A large-scale campaign dedicated to the International Day Against Drug Abuse was carried out in the country.
The Regional Commission for Drugs Control of the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Karakalpakstan, regional and Tashkent city khokimiyats (administrations) organized a Month of Struggle Against Drug Abuse. It included a number of preventive events involving both public and civil society organizations.
There was an event of burning drugs seized from illegal trafficking by the law enforcement agencies of Uzbekistan. The ceremony was also attended by representatives of the diplomatic corps and international organizations accredited in Uzbekistan.
Strengthening the capacity of drug treatment service
Measures were taken to improve the activities of drug treatment services.
In 2014, in Fergana city, there was commissioned a new building of the regional drug treatment clinic with all structural units of the outpatient department. Construction of the inpatient clinic building is planned in 2015.
Construction of Bukhara and Navoi regional drug treatment clinics is included to the 2015-2016 investment program.
For the development of urgent care in Bukhara, Kashkadarya, Namangan and Samarkand regional drug treatment clinics, new intensive care rooms were established and equipped with medical equipment with the technical assistance of the UNODC project GLO/J71 “Treatnet II - Treatment of drug addiction and its health consequences”.
Also, as part of this project, “Naloxone” medicine was purchased for the drug treatment clinics of the Republic, as well as “Application of the blocker of opiate receptors in opiate dependency" guidelines book was published and distributed among narcologists.
In 2014, a work was done to ensure the implementation of Uzbekistan's international obligations within the legal framework of bilateral and multilateral cooperation on drug control.
Within the framework of bilateral cooperation, on 3-15 May 2014 the Uzbekistan delegation made a study visit to the US, meeting with the Michele Leonhart, Administrator of the US Drug Enforcement Administration. The meeting discussed issues of cooperation in the fight against drug trafficking.
In the framework of the Uzbek-American anti-drug cooperation, a number of Amendments was signed to the Agreement between the Governments of the Republic of Uzbekistan and the United States of America on assistance in the field of drug control and enforcement from 14 August 2001.
In order to increase the efficiency of the Uzbek-Russian anti-drug cooperation, the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Uzbekistan and the Federal Drug Control Service of the Russian Federation signed Protocol on the exchange of research results in narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances seized from illegal turnover (December 10, 2014, Tashkent).
The implementation of the Agreement among the SCO member states on cooperation in combating illicit trafficking in narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and their precursors from 17 June 2004 was ensured.
The delegation of Uzbekistan participated in the meeting of heads of competent bodies of the SCO member states, authorised to combat illegal drug trafficking (19 June 2014, Dushanbe).
The work was carried out in the framework of the Central Asian Regional Information and Coordination Centre for combating illicit trafficking of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and their precursors. Representatives of the National Information and Analytical Centre on Drug Control (NIACDC) participated in the meetings of the Council of National Coordinators of CARICC.
The decision on organization of the Centre was adopted at the last meeting of the Council (9 December 2014, Almaty).
The coordination of the implementation of a number of international projects of UNODC and OSCE, aimed at improving the material-technical and human capacities of ministries and departments of the Republic was carried out.
Training courses, seminars and workshops were organized within the framework of projects in order to improve skills of the competent authorities of the Republic.
In 2014, 146 employees of the competent authorities of the Republic took part in training courses and seminars on the fight against drug trafficking, prevention and treatment of addiction.
There were held meetings and talks with leaders and representatives of the competent authorities of foreign states on the base of NIACDC, as well as with the staff of international organizations (UNODC, OSCE, and the European Commission).
The actual proposals and priorities of activities in the field of fight against illegal drug trafficking, which represent mutual interest, were discussed at the mentioned meetings.