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Thai government burn narcotics on combating drug abuse

Thai government burn narcotics on combating drug abuse

  • 2016-05-05

Thailand has incinerated almost 3.4 tons of confiscated drugs in an incinerator to

mark United Nation’s International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Drug

Trafficking. The illicit-drug burning ceremony is part of the government’s

national agenda on combating drug abuse. This may be one measure, but the country’s struggle with the surge in narcotics is still far from over.

Police officers in Thailand stack package after package of illegal drugs. This may

be any drug dealer’s dream robbery, but all 3.4 tons is bound for the

incinerator. That’s a street value of over $320 million.

The narcotics bonfire comprised of 2,793 kilograms of methamphetamines, almost 300 kilograms of ice, 125 kilograms of heroin and 17 kilograms of cocaine that were

collected from more than 2500 seizures over the past 9 months.

Wanchai Disates, Senior Advisor, Narcotics Suppression Bureau, said, "This has

been a serious problem that Thailand has faced for a long time, the drug problem.

Drug policies in this government are a top 10 priority that the government

announced to the national assembly."

This stance may show that Thailand is serious about their war against drugs. But

at the same time, it signals that the country faces renewed fears of rampant drug

abuse.

Thailand has some of the harshest drug laws in the world and the constant threat

of the death penalty hangs over the heads of traffickers.

Dusita Chumsri, Ratchaburi, said, "There are currently over 250000 prisoners in

Thailand’s prisons, more than 65% are on drug related charges. The majority of

drug convicts are here at Khao Bin Prison. This is Thailand’s highest maximum

security prison, but even behind bars, it hasn’t stopped major drug dealers from

carrying out a very profitable business. "

According to the Justice Ministry, 70% of drugs seized are ordered from behind

bars by mobile phones. Phones and drugs are thrown over prison walls by any means possible- some even using PVC pipes to propel the phones up to 300 meters.

Thanavee Prawat, Commander, Khao Bin Prison, said, "The mobile phone is an

important communication tool for them. Once inside prison, the price shoots up to

$20,000 for one phone since it’s difficult to smuggle phones into this prison. We

even have signal jammers in place so calls can’t be made but we still seize

phones all the time."

Khao Bin is now playing a vital role in the battle against big-time narcotics

dealers. A zone dedicated to high-level drug traders is equipped with the country

’s best security protection system. But as long as there are drug convicts behind

bars with lots of time, they still find a way.

Danai Subsin, Prison Guard, Khao Bin Prison, said, “They have nothing left. Being

locked up 24 hours a day, all they think about is how to smuggle things in. It’s

difficult for us to keep up as they constantly think of new ways.”

And that’s also what the government has been trying to do. But as long as drug

manufacturers can produce drugs and there are customers willing to buy them, it’s

a hard fight for any government to win.(From:CCTV)

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