drugs Cocaine
Investigations by Kuwaiti security services suggest that 70 out of every 100 criminal cases have a drug connection. Illustrative image. Image Credit: Shutterstock

Dubai: The Ministry of Interior in Kuwait is ramping up its crackdown on the drug trade, as a recent government report reveals alarming statistics.

Approximately 60 per cent of all prisoners are serving sentences for drug-related offences, indicating a significant link between narcotics and crime rates.

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Compiled by the General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning, the report shows that in the past decade, 25,000 individuals have been convicted in 19,000 drug cases. These figures highlight drugs as a major factor in various criminal activities, with medical reports showing that drug abuse often alters mental states, leading to criminal behaviour. Investigations by security services suggest that 70 out of every 100 criminal cases have a drug connection.

In response, the Ministry of Interior, under the directives of First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior Sheikh Talal Al Khaled, is implementing a comprehensive plan to tackle drug smuggling.

This plan involves international collaboration to dismantle smuggling networks, stringent control measures at ports, and intensified actions against traffickers within Kuwait.

Drug seizures 15-year high

A security source revealed that drug seizures in 2023 have reached a 15-year high, with the most recent operation leading to the confiscation of 800 kilos of drugs and approximately 1.5 million psychotropic pills within three months (from August to October 2023). International cooperation has also successfully thwarted an attempt to smuggle 800 kilos of hashish from Lebanon to Kuwait.

Efforts in international coordination have resulted in the apprehension of smuggling gangs intending to use Kuwait as a transit point for various drugs.

Over the past two months, 64 expatriates were arrested for drug possession and subsequently referred to deportation prison.

Official data indicates that the Ministry of Interior, across its various sectors, has successfully apprehended numerous defendants involved in various drug cases, with individuals being referred to the appropriate authorities for legal action.

In a single day in August, authorities seized 6,150 kilos of drugs and 763 psychotropic pills, filed 10 cases against 15 defendants, and confiscated 15 kilos of drugs from postal parcels, along with 7 kilos of psychotropic substances.

In addition, 14 cases were filed against 14 individuals, resulting in the seizure of 250,000 psychotropic pills and 11 kilos of narcotics.

Further unrelated seizures during the same month resulted in the confiscation of 8,130 pills.

Sheikh Talal Al Khaled reaffirmed Kuwait’s commitment to combating drug trafficking, highlighting the significant increase in drug seizures in the past two years. He emphasised the importance of protecting the youth in Gulf Cooperation Council countries from the dangers of drugs and the need to prevent the establishment of a drug market in the region.