Greece seizes record amount of amphetamine Captagon shipped from Syria

Greek authorities have seized what they described as the world’s largest single haul of super-charged amphetamine Captagon pills from Syria worth more than half a billion euros. (File/AFP)
Updated 05 July 2019

Greece seizes record amount of amphetamine Captagon shipped from Syria

  • Captagon is one of several brand names for fenethylline hydrochloride, a drug compound belonging to the family of amphetamines, stimulants of the central nervous system
  • “It is the largest quantity that has ever been seized globally, depriving organized crime of proceeds that would have exceeded $660 million (587.45 million euros),” the financial crimes unit said in a statement

ATHENS: Greek authorities have seized what they described as the world’s largest single haul of super-charged amphetamine Captagon pills from Syria worth more than half a billion euros.
Coast Guard and drug enforcement officers seized three containers full of the amphetamines, the financial crimes unit (SDOE) said on Friday. The operation involved 20 officers and landed 5.25 tons of the drug — 33 million Captagon pills — found in the containers shipped from Syria.
“It is the largest quantity that has ever been seized globally, depriving organized crime of proceeds that would have exceeded $660 million (587.45 million euros),” the financial crimes unit said in a statement.
Captagon is one of several brand names for fenethylline hydrochloride, a drug compound belonging to the family of amphetamines, stimulants of the central nervous system.
In the 1960s the drug was prescribed to treat narcolepsy and depression but by the 1980s the medical community determined that Captagon’s addictive properties outweighed clinical benefits and it was banned.
However, Captagon is a popular narcotic in the Arabian Peninsula and in war-torn Syria.
Syria became a major amphetamines exporter and consumer as the trauma of its civil war fueled demand and the breakdown in law and order created opportunites for producers.
Greek authorities were trying to determine if the shipment’s final destination was China, SDOE said, without providing further details.


Turkey to host Syria summit with Russia, Iran on September 16

Updated 21 min 26 sec ago

Turkey to host Syria summit with Russia, Iran on September 16

  • The summit will be in Ankara
  • The leaders will discuss the situation in Idlib and the political situation
ANKARA: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will host his Russian and Iranian counterparts for a summit on Syria in Ankara on September 16, the presidential spokesman said.
Despite being on opposing sides in the Syrian conflict, Syria regime backers Iran and Russia have worked closely with rebel supporter Turkey to find a political solution.
“The president will host a three-way summit with the participation of Russia and Iran in Ankara,” spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said late Wednesday.
The announcement of the meeting between President Vladimir Putin, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Erdogan comes at a time when Syrian forces have made advances into the last rebel stronghold of Idlib in Syria’s northwest.
The region, which has been under heavy bombardment since April, was supposed to be protected by a buffer zone deal signed between Turkey and Russia last year.
The leaders will discuss Idlib, as well as the establishment of a constitution commission and how the political process should continue, Kalin said.
Turkey is keen to prevent a large-scale offensive in Idlib — home to three million people — where Turkey has 12 observation posts.
The last meeting between the leaders was in February and the September event will be the fifth summit between Putin, Rouhani and Erdogan since November 2017.
Kalin said Erdogan would speak on the phone with Putin in the coming days, adding that preparations were being made for another call with US President Donald Trump.