Alikhan Smailov orders to study prohibition of money transfers related to drug trafficking

The draft Comprehensive Plan to Combat Drug Abuse and Drug Business for 2023-2025 was considered at the Government session chaired by Prime Minister Alikhan Smailov.

Minister of Internal Affairs Marat Akhmetzhanov reported that last year law enforcement and special agencies uncovered about three thousand drug crimes. Four organized narcotics groups were suppressed, 70 underground narcotics laboratories were liquidated, and 16 tons of drugs were seized. He added that every seventh drug crime registered this year was connected with the sale of illegal substances via the Internet.

In order to improve efficiency of the fight against drug trafficking on the instructions of the head of state a comprehensive plan until 2025 was developed. Its main objectives are to reduce the trafficking of especially dangerous types of drugs including synthetic drugs, the introduction of early detection and registration of drug addicts, increasing the competence and strengthening the material and technical base of the authorized bodies.

In particular, modern hardware and software equipment will allow to automate the detection of drug distribution through social networks and websites, and the "Cyber Surveillance" system will ensure online blocking of electronic stores.

In addition, special units will be equipped with drones with gas analyzers to conduct aerial reconnaissance of hard-to-reach places and detection of underground drug laboratories. At the same time it is planned to introduce a screening system that will allow identifying drug addicts at an early stage. At the same time, in order to improve the quality of drug treatment it is planned to renovate and repair drug dispensaries, as well as to create workshops for the rehabilitation of drug addicts.

According to Deputy Minister of Healthcare Timur Sultangaziyev, the work on opening medical and social rehabilitation departments in the regions, improvement of material and technical base of the regional and republican mental health centers, increasing effectiveness of treatment of addicts as well as informational and awareness work among citizens and propaganda of healthy lifestyle will be continued in the coming years.

Having heard the speakers, Prime Minister noted that the problem of drug distribution is gaining momentum on a larger scale. In particular, synthetic drugs are becoming more and more available every year due to new ways of their distribution through the Internet, postal shipments, "bookmarks", impersonal electronic payments. This also eliminates physical contact along the chain "drug dealer-distributor-consumer," which creates difficulties for the detention of distributors.

"We need to take measures to improve mechanisms for detecting and blocking drug sites and similar ads, as well as to work on the issues of banning money transfers related to drug trafficking. Banks see these suspicious transactions, through such a transfer one can trace the drug channel," Alikhan Smailov said.

However, he added that the law enforcement methods alone won't solve the problem because as long as there is demand, there will also be a market. In this regard, it is necessary to solve the problem of drug addiction in a comprehensive manner with the involvement of all relevant government agencies, non-governmental organizations, the media, social networks and family institutions in order to result in a "zero tolerance" to drugs in the society.

"First of all, it is necessary to strengthen the prevention work in educational institutions. We need a real social effect," Prime Minister stressed.

According to him, it is also necessary to improve methods of treatment, rehabilitation and social adaptation of drug addicts, taking into account the best international experience.

"Those cured of their addiction should not be lost to society. Not only motivation for treatment is needed here, but also further socialization of these people. The ministries of health and labor should be united in this direction. We need to propose appropriate measures," he said.

In conclusion, Prime Minister drew attention to the need for material and technical equipment of forensic examination bodies, which directly affects the quality and efficiency of the investigation of drug crimes.

"The Ministry of Internal Affairs needs to speed up the completion of the approval procedures of the draft comprehensive plan and begin its implementation," Alikhan Smailov added.

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