‘We are facing a drug war’ – Middle East Monitor

Algerian Interior Minister Brahim Merad addressed the “drug war” his country is facing by announcing: “Algeria is being targeted through drugs, as it is facing a war from its western neighbour, which requires us to confront it by all means.”

Merad praised the tremendous work done by the People’s National Army and the various security agencies in combating this phenomenon and protecting the borders from all forms of crime.

Regarding the measures taken by the Interior Ministry to combat drug abuse and trafficking, and ways to care for addicts, the interior minister indicated that the efforts by the National Security Services resulted in the handling of 32,742 cases during the first quarter of the current year, involving 37,352 people. During this time, about 2.5 million people were detained. Several tonnes of cannabis, in addition to 17 kilograms of cocaine, about one kilogram of heroin and 3.5 million tablets of psychotropic substances were confiscated.

Merad stated that, during 2022, the same parties were able to handle 85,538 drug-related crime cases, involving 97,863 people. Five tonnes of cannabis, 22 kilograms of cocaine, 8.5 kilograms of heroin and more than seven million tablets were seized.

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He added that this figure confirmed the magnitude of the efforts made by the National Security Agency, in coordination with the interests of the ministerial department and various other security agencies, in addressing various drug-related crimes. Merad remarked that this proves the extent of the vigilance of state agencies in combating the issue.

The interior minister explained that his ministry, in coordination with the various concerned sectors, had prepared a comprehensive and balanced national strategy, which relied mainly on limiting the supply of drugs and working to reduce the demand for them while ensuring effective care for addicts through treatment and social rehabilitation.

The interior minister added that the various security departments are preparing and implementing action plans to involve all their operational units in combating the illegal trafficking of narcotics and psychotropic substances, in addition to adopting a preventive policy based on awareness of the dangers of this phenomenon.

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