World Bulletin/News Desk
In an anti-narcoterrorism operation on Tuesday, security forces supported by helicopters seized 3 tons of hashish and 15 million marijuana plants sown over 1,000 acres in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır's Lice district.
The hashish was hidden in a field. The security forces destroyed the hashish and the marijuana plants.
During the operation, security personnel found that drug dealers had installed pipes for a working drip irrigation system for the first time.
A total of 600 security personnel participated in the operation, which was organized by the Diyarbakır Governor's Office and the Diyarbakır Chief Public Prosecutor's Office.
The Diyarbakır Gendarmerie Regional Command led the raid, which began early on Tuesday morning.
Twenty helicopters assisted, in addition to armored vehicles.
Heavy blow dealt to PKK drug trade in last six months
Turkish security forces struck hard at one of the main sources of revenue for the Kurdistan Workers' Party's (PKK) -- drug trafficking -- with operations carried out in southeastern Turkey over the past six months. Since January, more than 36 million cannabis roots valued at up to TL 4 billion and 2,930 kilograms of heroin with a value of TL 200 million have been seized by the security forces.
The cannabis, which was planted over thousands of acres, was collected and destroyed in operations jointly carried out by the gendarmerie, police and village guards.
Other types of plants used to manufacture drugs that were found in the fields were also seized, costing the growers millions of lira in their eventual value.
Turkey has for a long time focused solely on the security side of the conflict with the PKK, ignoring, for the most part, the subsidiary efforts or branches of the PKK's criminal activities.
Currently, the most impacted parts of the Southeast serve as “safe havens” for marijuana growers, as well as for traffickers of synthetic narcotics.
There is historical background to the story that has paved the way for the PKK to plant fields of drugs. As part of the Law of Emergency (OHAL) that was in place in most eastern and southeastern provinces well into the early 2000s, hundreds of villages were evacuated by the state, with displaced people being relocated to cities in the west. It was after these departures that the plantations started and PKK involvement in illegal drug growing increased. With the villages empty and security forces no longer visiting rural areas, many districts succumbed to PKK demands to plant drugs. The PKK offered protection to the producers.
According to a 2012 report of the European Monitoring Center for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA), 53 percent of the seizures of heroin all across the world take place in Turkey and Iran.
As part of Cultural Diplomacy, the Pakistan Embassy in Ankara organized this year’s Chughtai Art Awards competition in the Konya province.
Most of Tuesday’s dailies cover Turkish President Erdogan’s response to a New York Times’s editorial and Galatasaray’s Turkish Super League title win
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Monday’s papers cover Turkish PM's election rallies and the narrowing race for the Turkish Super League title
AK Party MP candidate Ramazan Demir was injured in knife attack in Turkey's south-central province of Adana
A new platform dock for the Turkish Naval Forces has become the most expensive defense project to be attempted in Turkey.
Turkey will host the Sixth World Forum on Energy Regulation and it is hoped it will be bridge for energy regulators from different parts of world.
Turkish dailies on Friday covered CHP's unveiling of a new campaign promise- to create a new megacity - and reported on the opening of a new space center in Ankara.
Turkey's 52nd airport, built on an artificial island along the seashore of Ordu, will be opened by President Erdogan and PM Davutoglu Friday afternoon
Turkish prime minister says suspect in twin attacks on opposition offices had been member of Marxist group
This year, arrangements have been made to hold the art competition in Konya
International training on electricity distribution provided to developing nations
Greece's culture minister Nikos Xydakis has said that both Greece and Turkey must protect their cultural heritage.