105,000 drug dealers arrested in Saudi Arabia

105,000 drug dealers arrested in Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabian authorities have seized a "magnitude" of drugs in raids carried out over the past two years that resulted in the arrest of 105,000 dealers and smugglers.
2 min read
17 February, 2016
Saudi Arabian authorities have launched raids across the country [Getty]
An estimated 105,000 drug dealers have been arrested in Saudi Arabia over a period of two years.

The figures, which show 147 arrests per day, suggest dealers are caught every hour in the kingdom.

The National Commission for Drug Control said 824 drug and alcohol smugglers were arrested in 2016 alone.

Among the raids, nearly 230,000 tablets of Kptagon and an estimated 82kg of Hashish were seized.

The authority claims to have confiscated an average of 140 pills and 19 cannabis cigarettes per minute.

The raids were carried out as part of a government plan to eradicate drug use while promoting education among students in schools and universities.

"There are great attempts to target young people," Secretary- General of the commission, Abdulelah al-Sharif said, pointing towards the "magnitude of seizures" as evidence.

"In two years we have 105,000 suspected dealers, smugglers and users. In doing so we were able to seize 59,000 tonnes of Hashish and 69kg of heroin. These are huge amounts."

General Directorate for Drug Control Director, General Ahmed bin Saadi al-Zahrani confirmed that the drugs smuggled to Saudi Arabia are specially manufactured in secret factories, stressing that "the aim for the manufacturers is not financial, but rather it is to destroy the youth at home."

"The drugs contain less than 10 per cent narcotics and is full of substances that are harmful to the mind," he said.

Nearly 70 per cent of the kingdom's population is under 30.

The young population has had to bear the effects of the crashing oil revenues while facing a decrease in available jobs due to government cuts and privatisation.