Drugs worth US$70mil set ablaze amid crackdown


Big haul: An official preparing to burn seized drugs during the destruction ceremony in Phnom Penh. — AFP

More than four tonnes of illegal drugs, worth nearly US$70mil (RM330mil) have been burnt as the country intensifies a crackdown on narcotic trafficking.

Cambodian authorities burned the drugs, including ketamine, methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine and chemical substances, at a brick kiln under the guard of dozens of armed forces.

Meas Virith, secretary general of the National Authority for Combating Drugs, told reporters the street value of the 4.1 tonnes of drugs was around US$67mil (RM316mil).

“If the authorities failed to seize these drugs, millions of people would have been victimised,” he said, adding the Cambodian government has ramped up efforts to combat drug trafficking.

Up in smoke: Military police standing guard as smoke rises from the drugs burning during the destruction ceremony to mark the UN’s ‘International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking’ in Phnom Penh. — AFPUp in smoke: Military police standing guard as smoke rises from the drugs burning during the destruction ceremony to mark the UN’s ‘International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking’ in Phnom Penh. — AFP

Cambodia has become a major transit country for drug trafficking, according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.

Most of the illegal drugs seized here were from the so-called Golden Triangle where Myanmar, Laos and Thailand meet, Meas said.

Around 10,000 drug-related suspects were arrested and 4.7 tonnes of illicit drugs were seized in the first five months of 2024. — AFP

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