AsiaCentral AsiaUzbekistan

The main directions of anti-drug policies and their implementation in the Republic of Uzbekistan in 2014

20Annex_letterUzbekistan has marshalled all of the State’s social, economic and political resources to tackle the drug threat. It is taking a more balanced approach to drug control that aims to reduce demand and prevent illicit trafficking.

The State Commission on Drug Control has approved and is implementing a programme of integrated measures to prevent drug abuse and trafficking over the period 2011-2015.

The programme includes activities to further strengthen the logistical and human resource capacities of law enforcement agencies, modernize and develop the drug treatment service, enhance international cooperation in countering illicit drug trafficking and conduct targeted work to prevent drug addiction.

  1. Combating drug trafficking

In 2014, as a result of targeted measures to identify and suppress drug trafficking channels, as well as comprehensive operations to suppress illicit drug trafficking, Uzbek law enforcement agencies identified 6,698 cases of drug-related crimes (7,680 cases in 2013), including 3,062 cases of drug sales (3,772 in 2013), 607 of smuggling (623 in 2013), 1,320 of illicit cultivation of narcotic plants (1,491 in 2013) and 1,709 of other drug-related crimes (1,794 in 2013).

A total of 2 tons and 298 kg (2 tons and 326 kg in 2013) of trafficked narcotic substances were seized, including 106.5 (121.6) kg of heroin, 881.9 (851.3) kg of opium, 802.9 (873.5) kg of marijuana, 100 (143.3) kg of hashish and 406.3 (336.3) kg of koknar.

Law enforcement efforts were focused on curbing and eliminating the criminal activity of interregional drug trafficking groups that had organized channels for smuggling drugs across the border. Strict border controls and vehicle inspection makes these activities more effective.

Uzbekistan’s two-stage integrated large-scale operation Black Poppy 2014 is designed to detect and prevent the illicit cultivation of narcotic plants, as well as prevent offences related to drug trafficking.

Preventive operations and police investigations identified 1,225 cases of illegal cultivation of narcotic plants (1,223 cases in 2013). Illicit crops covering a total surface area of 6,692 (10,356) sq. m were destroyed.

During the operation Black Poppy 2014, a total of 2,900 (3,101) drug-related crimes were identified and 852 (785) kg of narcotic substances were seized.

  1. Intelligence analysis and technical capacity-building for law enforcement agencies

In 2014 efforts were made in terms of intelligence analysis and technical capacity-building for Uzbek law enforcement agencies in the area of drug trafficking prevention.

With a view to improving the mechanism for information exchange and centralized processing, a single database has been developed with the modern intelligence analysis software IBM i2, which is used in international projects.

This programme has been installed in the intelligence units of law enforcement agencies and a simplified form of the database has been developed.

The National Centre for Drug Control has held training courses on methodologies for computer-assisted analysis of current information for staff of the intelligence units of the Ministry of the Interior, the National Security Service, the Committee on the Protection of the State Border of the National Security Service, the State Customs Committee and the General Prosecutor’s Office.

A national inter-agency database system (similar to the one used by law enforcement systems in member States of the European Union) is now being developed.

Technical capacity-building measures have been taken to improve the ability of the competent Uzbek authorities to detect drugs smuggled across the State border.

Modern monitoring equipment, including large fixed and mobile scanners, has been installed at a number of checkpoints.

III. Drug abuse: extent, patterns and trends

In 2014 the positive trend in key epidemiological indicators of the drug situation was maintained. The national average rate of primary morbidity related to drug addiction was lower than in 2013, while the number of registered drug addicts decreased and the number of intravenous drug users also declined.

  1. Prevention of drug addiction

In 2014 significant efforts were focused on prevention, the main objectives being to curb the demand for narcotics and other psychoactive substances and reduce the number of individuals at high risk of involvement in drug use.

Regional workshops were organized for schools’ deputy directors for spiritual and outreach work, experienced educators and teachers of the course “basics of a healthy lifestyle”, in order to make their awareness-raising efforts with students more effective. The workshops gave extensive coverage to the prevention of child neglect, crime, drug abuse and HIV.

The Ministry of Education, in conjunction with the Uzbek Education Centre and the Tashkent Islamic University, has organized training courses to provide methodological guidance for 325 spiritual and moral education specialists.

Drug addiction treatment clinics provided 183 seminars for educators on the 18-hour programme for prevention and early detection of psychoactive substance dependence in children and adolescents.

More than 482,100 children, or 10.8 per cent of all students, are involved in leisure activities provided by sports and other clubs in general education schools.

Healthy lifestyles are promoted in schools and the makhallyas (citizens’ self-governing bodies) at 6,500 sports clubs, which are attended by more than 1.6 million children. The total number of children involved in sports has increased by 12.3 per cent.

Ministries, departments and social organizations have organized events for primary prevention of drug use by various population groups and particularly young people.

For example, doctors specializing in drug abuse treatment offered a total of 7,338 lectures, 3,087 workshops, and 632 media outreach events.

Drug treatment facilities provided 2,526 consultations to callers through a 24-hour helpline.

A major campaign was conducted for the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.

The regional commissions on drug control of the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Karakalpakstan and the provincial and Tashkent city khokimiyat (authorities) organized a one-month campaign against drug abuse, which included several preventive activities conducted by both public and civil-society organizations.

An event was organized for the incineration of narcotic drugs seized from illicit trafficking by law enforcement agencies. The ceremony was attended by representatives of the diplomatic corps and international organizations accredited in Uzbekistan.

  1. Capacity-building for addiction treatment services

Measures have been taken to improve addiction treatment services.

In 2014 in Fergan, work was completed on a new model regional drug addiction treatment centre with all the necessary outpatient department facilities.

Construction of the building for the in-patient department is scheduled for 2015.

The investment programme for 2015-2016 provides for the construction of buildings for the Bukharsk and Navoiy provincial drug addiction treatment facilities.

As part of disaster relief efforts, intensive care units were organized at the Bukharsk, Kashka-Darya, Namangan and Samarkand provincial drug addiction treatment facilities and medical equipment was provided through technical assistance under the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) project GLO/J71 “Treatnet II — Treating drug dependence and its health consequences”.

Naloxone medication was provided for drug addiction treatment facilities as part of this project. Guidelines on the application of opioid receptor blockers for opioid dependency were published and disseminated among doctors.

  1. International cooperation

In 2014, Uzbekistan made efforts to comply with its international treaty obligations for bilateral and multilateral cooperation in the area of drug control.

As part of bilateral cooperation efforts, a delegation from Uzbekistan visited the United States for the period 3-15 May 2014, and during this visit a meeting was held with the Administrator of the United States Drug Enforcement Administration,

Ms. Michele Leonhart. Issues of cooperation in countering drug trafficking were discussed at the meeting.

As part of Uzbek-United States drug prevention cooperation, a number of amendments were made to the agreement of 14 August 2001 between the Governments of Uzbekistan and the United States on assistance in the field of drug control and enforcement.

In order to enhance Uzbek-Russian Federation cooperation on drug control, the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Uzbekistan and the Federal Drug Control Service of the Russian Federation signed a protocol on the exchange of research findings on narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances seized in illicit trafficking (10 December 2014, city of Tashkent).

The agreement between the member States of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) on cooperation in combating illicit trafficking in narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and their precursors of 17 June 2004 was implemented.

An Uzbek delegation took part in the meeting of directors of the competent authorities of SCO member States with responsibility for drug trafficking prevention (19 June 2014, Dushanbe).

The Central Asian Regional Information and Coordination Centre for Combating the Illicit Trafficking of Narcotic Drugs, Psychotropic Substances and Their Precursors (CARICC) continued its work. Representatives of the National Information and Analytical Centre for Drug Control (NIACDC) took part in the meetings of the CARICC Council of National Coordinators.

At the last meeting of the Council (9 December 2014, Almaty), a decision was taken concerning the organization of the Centre’s activities.

A number of international UNODC and Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) projects aimed at strengthening the logistical and human resource capacity of concerned ministries and departments were implemented in a coordinated manner.

As part of those projects, training courses, workshops and training sessions were organized in order to build the capacity of the competent authorities.

In 2014, 146 staff members from the competent authorities took part in training events, courses and workshops on countering illicit drug trafficking and drug abuse prevention and treatment.

NIACDC hosted meetings and negotiations for leaders and representatives of the competent authorities of foreign States, as well as staff of international organizations (UNODC, United Nations, OSCE and the European Commission).

The participants in those meetings discussed current proposals and priorities of mutual concern in their fight against illicit drug trafficking.

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