Albania declares war on drug trade


Drug lords in Albania — one of the top countries in the worldwide drug trade — have long been untouchable. With their connections in high places, it was dangerous to go after them. That may be about to change.

The suspense was palpable: Before the big announcement, Albanian Interior Minister Fatmir Xhafaj even recommended to journalists not to switch off their mobile phones.

Then, at the beginning of this week, the good news came: In a large-scale operation across 12 cities, Albanian police had succeeded in smashing a drug ring with connections to politics. According to a tweet by Xhafaj, the operation lasted three days, with 1,500 policemen taking part. Twenty-seven people, including three policemen, were arrested, 100 apartments were searched and 182.5 kilograms (402 pounds) of opium were confiscated.

It was the largest operation of its kind in Albania. A total of four drug gangs, who operating together had organized everything from drug production to smuggling and money laundering, were broken up. Six suspects are still wanted…

Read more : Deutsche Welle, 27.10.2018