On May 14, Jordan announced that its armed forces had foiled an attempt to smuggle drugs into the country from neighboring Syria with a drone.
A source in the General Command of the Jordanian Armed Forces told the Jordan News Agency (Petra) that drone used in the attempt was shot down near the border line with Syria. Quantities of drugs were found later during a combing operation in the same area.
“The [armed forces] will deal with all force and firmness to prevent any infiltration or smuggling attempts,” the unnamed source told Petra.
Petra released photos of the drone used in the smuggling attempt, a commercially-available DJI Mavic quadcopter that had been modified to carry a small shipment of drugs.
The seized drugs were Captagon, scientifically known as Fenethylline, a codrug of amphetamine and theophylline. The drug is widely abused in the Middle East, especially in the Arabian Peninsula.
Struck by a disastrous economic crisis and a destructive war, Syria is today one of the main Captagon production hubs in the Middle East.
This was not the first time Syrian traffickers have been documented using drones to smuggle drugs into Jordan. Last year, the Jordanian military shot down a drone flying a large quantity of drugs across the border.
Jordan tightened security along the border with Syria in February following clashes with drug traffickers that left a Jordanian officer dead and three soldiers wounded. As a result of the new measures, dozens of traffickers were killed while trying to infiltrate into Jordan in the last few months.
Despite these security measures, Jordan remains the shortest smuggling route to the lucrative drug market of Saudi Arabia and other Arabian Peninsula states.
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