On 17 April 2021, the Federal Intelligence and Investigations Agency in the Iraqi Ministry of Interior announced the arrest of a major foreign narcotics smuggler in the south of the country. The foreign narcotics smuggler used to transport drugs from a neighbouring country.
The agency stated in a press release, that its units managed to arrest a suspect in the Abu Al-Khasib district in Basra Governorate (south of Iraq) who was smuggling drugs from a neighbouring country (which it did not name) into Iraq”. The Federal Intelligence and Investigations Agency personnel reportedly found 10 kg of narcotics and hashish in the smuggler’s possession. It added that the narcotic substances were seized while the smugglers was detained for investigation.
Iraq suffers from the spread of narcotics and its transformation from a transit area to an area of consumption and production, where narcotic substances are particularly prevalent in the southern governorates.
Iraqi border governorates, such as Diyala on Iranian border, suffer from heavy presence of drug gangs. Over the past several years, Iraqi police forces continued to pursue drug cells, who used to smuggle narcotics across the border from Iran using mules, construction shipments, and foodstuffs to hide their products.