Cablegate: Turkey: 2002 End Use Monitoring Report

Published: Wed 19 Feb 2003 03:01 PM
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
E.O. 12958: N/A
1. Turkey is a major transit route for Southwest Asian
heroin moving to European markets. Turkish law enforcement
agencies attach a high priority to interdiction, although
they face serious resource constraints in keeping up with the
technology traffickers use in their operations and
communications. Turkish agencies continue to use INL-funded
equipment. This equipment and INL-funded training furthers
the mission of DEA, which relies on close cooperation with
Turkish counterparts but lacks operational assistance
funding. INL has not provided assistance to Turkey beyond FY
1999, since the GOT did not accept language regarding human
rights in the FY 2000 Letter of Agreement. Remaining INL
funds in the amount of $50,000 should be exhausted in 2003.
Mission officers conducted several End Use Monitoring (EUM)
trips in 2002, to ensure that equipment provided under our
annual USD $500,000 (appropriations given until 1999)
counter-narcotics program was properly used and maintained.
Post successfully worked with Turkish agencies in 2002 to
disburse funds from previous years. In 2002, Post procured
$825,000 in equipment and training for GOT agencies.
Strategic Overview:
2. Turkey, largely as a result of its geographical
position, is a major transshipment point for Southwest Asian
opiates to European markets. European governments estimate
that 75 percent of the heroin coming into Europe either
transits Turkey or is handled by Turkish criminal
organizations in Central Europe. Turkish law enforcement
agencies focus their efforts on stemming this traffic, by
stopping it at Turkey,s eastern and western border gates,
and by destroying illicit laboratories within Turkey which
process smuggled raw materials into heroin. In March 2002,
Turkish authorities seized 7,454 kilos of morphine base as a
result of a DEA-Turkish Jandarma joint investigation. This
was the largest seizure of morphine base ever in Turkey.
3. Turkey is one of the two traditional producers of opium
authorized by the UN to provide raw material for the
international pharmaceutical market. Licit opium is produced
by the Turkish Grain Board (TMO), which has taken significant
steps since 2000 to improve opium yields in its crop. There
is no appreciable cultivation of illicit narcotics in Turkey.
4. Given these strategic conditions, bilateral
counter-narcotics cooperation plays an important part in our
overall relationship with Turkey. Turkey did not sign a new
Letter of Agreement (LOI) in 2000 to extend further
counter-narcotics assistance, due to language regarding human
rights in the draft LOI. Narcor is working to complete
disbursement of funds remaining from previous years, and
estimates that all INL funding will be exhausted in 2003.
5. The Embassy provided $825,000 in anti-narcotics commodity
assistance and training to Turkish law enforcement and drug
authorities in 2002. Post extended this assistance and
related training to:
Turkish Grain Board (TMO) - $420,000 for equipment to
test poppy seeds in producing new drugs for its licit poppy
program; $234,000 for a seed processing/cleaning and
packaging machine.
Turkish Customs Border Guards - $157,000 for ion
scanners; $2,000 for digital cameras.
Turkish Jandarma - $1,600 for video cameras; $1,600 for
digital cameras; $3,500 for undercover transmitters and
communications systems.
Turkish National Police (TNP) & Turkish Customs Boarder
Guards - $5,100 for the continued English language courses.
ANATEM Drug Research and Treatment Center ) located in
Istanbul, this center has received INL funds in past years
but did not receive any procurements in 2002.
EUM Trips:
6. Embassy officials conducted several monitoring trips in
2002. Embassy officials conducted one end use monitoring
trip to Istanbul, as well as several visits to TNP
7. Econoff conducted an end-use monitoring trip to Istanbul
in August 2002, visiting Nihat Kubus, the Chief of the
Technical Unit for the Turkish National Police (TNP) in
Istanbul. Kubus provided econoff and accompanying DEA
officer a tour of the facilities, including the storage room
for equipment. He said all of the U.S.-provided equipment
was accounted for, and the Istanbul TNP still used some of
this equipment. For example, still in use were radios
provided from 1988-2002, telescopic cameras provided in 1989,
GPS equipment provided in 2002, actuators provided in 1992,
and a fiberscope provided in 1989. Kubus said some of the
equipment supplied by INL, such as the bullet proof vests
which the U.S. provided in 1990, were no longer usable either
because the shelf life had expired or it was no longer
technically adequate.
8. Kubus said he believed the INL program had been valuable,
as it allowed the TNP to purchase high-tech equipment it
would not otherwise be able to purchase. However, he
complained, he felt that TNP Ankara needed to coordinate more
closely with TNP Istanbul before it ordered equipment. Kubus
said it would be useful if he had more input into the
decision-making process, as his equipment needs were
sometimes different than those in Ankara.
9. Econoff and DEA officer visited Mustafa Gokcimen,
Director of the TNP,s Technical Unit in Ankara, on August
14, 2002. Gokcimen and his technical staff provided a
demonstration of how the TNP were utilizing the GPS system,
which was funded by INL in 2000. Gokcimen said the TNP were
making good use of the system, using it to track suspected
drug traffickers. The system had now been extended to ten
different cities in Turkey, including Istanbul. They were
now working on other cities and on some technical
modifications to make the GPS system compatible with some of
the TNP,s other tracking systems.
10. Though the direct impact is difficult to calculate,
Turkish anti-narcotics authorities had several operational
successes in 2002:
In March, the Turkish Jandarma, working with the DEA Istanbul
Resident Office and based on intelligence developed by DEA,
seized 7.5 metric tons of morphine base. This seizure led to
the arrest of a DEA priority target.
DEA and Turkish Counterparts continue to focus on acetic
anhydride (AA) which is smuggled into Turkey and used to
convert morphine base into heroin in illicit laboratories
located in Turkey. In January 2002, the TNP seized 10,000
kilograms of AA in Bursa, Turkey.
In April, the TNP seized 2 tons of AA from a TIR
truck/trailer in Istanbul. The AA arrived in Samsun, Turkey
from the Ukraine.
In December, DEA,s Ankara Regional Office, Moscow, Russia
Country Office, the TNP and Russian officials successfully
conducted an international controlled delivery of 3.5 tons of
AA from Russia to Turkey. This investigation led to the
identification of the AA source of supply in Russia as well
as the arrest of the transporters, brokers, and end users in
In May, as the result of DEA, TNP and Turkish Customs
cooperative efforts, Turkish Customs seized 93.6 kilograms of
heroin and arrested a Macedonian national at the Ipsala
border crossing on the Turkish/Greek border. The heroin was
secreted inside the refrigeration compartment of a truck
transporting 17 tons of tomatoes from Turkey.
During 2002, several operational captagon laboratories were
seized in Turkey. Fenethylline, which is commonly called
captagon, is a stimulant traditionally produced in Bulgaria
and trafficked through Turkey to countries on the Arabian
Peninsula. The first seizure of Turkish-produced captagon
occurred in July 2002, when Turkish authorities seized a
captagon laboratory and approximately 5-6 million captagon
tablets. The Turkish Jandarma seized another two operational
captagon laboratories in Istanbul in January 2003.
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