The phrase "In the USA someone dies from a heroin overdose every 50 minutes" from BBC’s documentary Smack in Suburbia America's Heroin Crisis describes to what extend narcotics are a societal tragedy.
While exact numbers are impossible to come by, due to the nature of the business, the "UN Organization on Drugs and Crime" (UNODC) estimates that illegal narcotics represent the world's third-biggest export, after oil and the arms trade, worth more than $300 billion annually.
In 2013 and 2014, the number of individuals dying of narcotics has increased in parallel with the quantity of heroin, cocaine, and amphetamines seized in Germany. In this group, the number of individuals aged below 25 – sadly – continues showing an increasing trend throughout years.
In England during 2014/15 period, there was a large increase in the quantity of heroin seized (by both police forces and Border Force) from 647 kilograms in 2013/14 to 1,113 kilograms in 2014/15, an increase of 72 per cent.
The quantity of narcotics seized in France in 2015 was recorded as 160 tons. The biggest seizure in once was 7 tons and occurred in Paris in October 2015. Experts point out only 1/10th of the traded narcotics are seized, which means whenever 1kg of narcotics is caught, 9kgs are still being traded on diverse markets.
In England, statistics indicate the number of heroin addicted individuals was 260,000 in 2006. Unfortunally, we have no updated figure of this. But we certainly know today is that the number or narco-addicted individuals is very much higher than this figure.
The National Crime Agency from the UK points out in a twitter message on December 18th 2015 ‘more than 24 billion pounds are spent on organized crimes. Let us think for a minute, what actions could have been undertaken with this tremendous amount of money to make the UK a country better off in living. Most important, would the mental and physical health problem of 260 thousand individuals even exist?
Eighty percent of narcotics smuggling to European countries is perpetrated by PKK. As a supportive example, an information in UK’s records mentions Abdullah Baybasin controlled 90% of heroin smuggling to UK in 2006. The same person was sentenced in Turkey for trafficking narcotics and financially supporting PKK. But he escaped to the UK where he had a residence permit as a “Kurdish refugee”. Media leaks alleged Abdullah Baybasin was used in UK intelligence service’s spying acts in exchange of the residence permit.
One day, if PKK succeed in establishing "Kurdistan", its base will be narco-cash generated by the drug trafficking with which PKK poisoned Europe.
The world’s third largest narco-terrorist organization PKK gives the impression it has no liaison with its sub-units by creating confusion. In reality, they are all units of PKK within a tight knotted and strict organizational structure. For this exact reason, it is important to remember that Democratic Union Party (PYD) is PKK’s unit in Syria, just like Kurdistan Democratic Solution Party (PCDK) is in Iraq, and Kurdistan Free Life Party (PJAK) is in Iran. Differently named in different countries, each PKK unit has distinct legions conducting the armed conflict such as YPG, HPG, etc. Over all of them exists Koma Civakên Kurdistan (KCK).
PKK is ranked in the list of terrorist organizations by the EU and the USA. It is so in many countries of the world, including Japan to Azerbaidjan. Because PKK connects between all continents, it can – and does – generate most of its financial resources from international illegal activities. PKK’s 2015 budget is estimated at 86 billion dollars.
The terrorist organization imitates Hezbollah to a big extend in organization. We observe this imitation in narco-traffics as well. Although individuals work in different branches of the structure, they are elements of the common narco-traffic structure thanks to tight family bonds. They use their legal business to launder the black money they earn from illegal activities. One example among many others is; the Buldan and the Baybasin families doing legal trade in addition to the manufacture and trade of narcotics. The HDP parliamentary Pervin Buldan’s brother in law Nihat Buldan was caught with 90kg of heroin in 2008. Her cousin Rosat Buldan and his son Sedat Buldan were also caught narco-trafficking in 2012.
François Haut depicts PKK’s emerge from Lebanon and its expansion to the world and transformation into a narco-terrorist organization, and its other organized crimes in "Kurdish Extremism and Organised Crime: The Kurdistan Workers Party. A short citation from his report;
"Let's listen to what the US DEA wrote in 1995: "It has been established that the PKK now has perfect arrangement to produce, transport and traffic opiates and cannabis throughout Europe. Moreover, material evidence and intelligence sources have shown that the PKK is also engaging in laundering money from drug trafficking. The fund thus recovered are then funneled back into the terrorist organization.
Regional conflicts and wars play an important role in PKK’s growth, and expansion and variation in terror activities. The Iran-Iraq War, the Gulf War, Iraq’s invasion, the civil war in Syria brought the organization to nowadays. The growth of the organization engendered the necessity to grow the financial resources as well. It carried one step further the production of narcotics in Lebanon/Bekaa by starting to transport the produced goods to Europe. 1990s were years of massive heroin smuggling to the West for the narco-terrorist organization. This was only the beginning.
Through 1990s PKK’s fight along with the Kurdish peshmergas against Barzani gave rise to the need of holding high firepower weapons. The same need was felt to conduct terrorist attacks in Turkey and fight against Turkish security forces. With the start of the civil war in Syria in the following years and for PYD under the autonomous “Rojava”, PKK had to hold weapons in higher quantity and effectiveness. Consequently, classic insufficient weapons such as AK-47s started to be replaced by weapons regular armies possess. The organization succeeded in decreasing effects of the airstrikes of the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) with SA7 missiles.
An eyeshot ons PKK’s attempts of having heavy arms was discovered on October 6, 2012 by the French anti-terror police. PKK’s high ranked member Adem Uzun was arrested at the operation. He was brought in court with other three members of the organization and was sent to prison for implication in buying arms worth 1 billion 200 thousand Euros. Among the arms in question, were anti-tank weapons.
The terrorist organization depends on its arm power which is sourced by its financial resources which rely on the scale of narco-trafficking. As the logic of this equation reveals, an increase in PKK’s arm capacity is observed – especially in 2012- in parallel to an extraordinary rise in narco-trafficking. The quantity of traded narcotics was recited in tons.
Conflict occurred with DHKP/C in PKK’s fight over being the only head of the European narcotics market. PKK made a significant step forward in this purpose by committing a murder in 1988 in Netherlands. The current boss of the European narcotics market is PKK. It cares to avoid being in police and intelligence reports. It changed its strategy to discretion to delete its name off EU’s and USA’s terrorist organizations list. But it cannot leave the narcotics market. In this case, criminal vendors are intermediating all of PKK’s actions from the production process to transportation to Europe and USA, down to street dealers. It is extremely careful at not being a ring of the chain.
Nowadays the competition among vendors is so fierce, the scramble that continues with mutual killings spread over Netherlands, France, Spain, Panama, USA, Mexico, and Colombia. Murders are committed in Netherlands, Panama, Dubai, and Turkey while the armed conflict is not avoided in other places. After murders in Netherlands and Turkey, murderers and instigators run to PKK’s safe haven in Northern Iraq to escape law enforcement and police pursuit.
The murders of the high-ranked PKK member Sakine Polat Cansiz and PKK’s two other female members in Paris are directly linked to this affair. Uncontrolled expenses under the supervision of Europe’s representative Ali Riza Altun created a deep call to account inside PKK when the French police caught PKK on heroin money laundering which consequently decoded PKK’s organizational structure and later showed worldwide PKK’s heavy weapon purchases after the arrest of Nedim Seven.
There is a relation between Sakine Polat – known as a straight out and veracious person – being assassinated while investigating PKK’s internal affairs. All of the reports on the execution of the three women are created by PKK to prevent the truth comes out.
In Afghanistan, Taliban contributes significantly to the increase of narco-trafficking in the world by freeing the production of opium. The civil war in Syria engendered the same consequence as in Afghanistan. In Syria where cannabis is the main raw material, the heroin and marijuana industries grow fast under PKK’s control. The region with the highest growth are Kurdish regions. At the present, an extraordinary rise in cannabis plantation took place in Turkey and Syria. Narcotics transformed into heroin in laboratories in northern Iraq are sent to Europe in big piles, and to the American continent from there.
In 2012 in Diyarbakır's Lice, Hazro, Hani, and Kulp provinces and in Bingöl's Genç province endless fields of cannabis plantations were discovered. One has to know these regions are under PKK’s absolute control. A report issued by the Ministery of Interior declared PKK earned 1billion dollars in 2015 from narco-plantations and trafficking.
In order to get an idea of the volume of narco-trafficking, we have to look at the seized quantities. In Istanbul only, 15,165kg of heroin was caught over the past four years while attempting to cross to European countries.
More than 13 tons of heroin were seized in an operation organized by Turkish security forces on the offshores of Libya in a Bolivia flagged ship that departed from Syria.
On January 2014 two tons of heroin were found on the Armenia-Iran border crossing Meghri in a truck departed from Turkey.
Two tons of heroin were seized in Greece in a truck making its way to Netherlands.
Let’s remember once again; security forces’ rate of successful seizure in narco-trafficking is 1/10. It is estimated tons of non-seizable narcotics reach Europe and the USA, poison thousands of innocent people, and the use of the earned money in massacring innocent people with terrorism is a shame of the humanity.
Narco-trafficking and terror are inseparable illegal acts. Targeting only one of the two in the counter-fight will not only result in with failure, but will also ease the business of organized crime and terror organizations. On the other hand, a coordinated battle among countries transited by different stages of narcotics – from the growth of plantations to the delivery to the user – is essential.
It is unfortunately impossible to mention such a cooperation in our region. In the USA the
Office of Foreign Assets Control such declared PKK’s high ranked members as Specially Designated Narcotics Traffickers Kingpin (SDNTK). Nonetheless these PKK members are supporting YPG in Syria. This situation clearly serves the poisoning of innocent people by a narco-terrorist organization.
As another example, European countries and the USA spread loud to their public ISIL’s oil smuggling business. Each time they accused Turkey for complicity. They sadly never talked about hundreds of kilograms and hectares of marijuana fields left behind by PKK/PYD when they had to leave Kobani.
In the world, political interests are mostly favored over public interests. Terror and organized crime organizations benefit from this greed. As positioned in one corner of the politics, NGOs seek the same self-interest; to the point they don’t see necessary to hide their links with a narco-terrorist organization as PKK. William Bourdon undertook the advocacy of PKK members trying to launder dollars smudged with cocaine. The lawyer is also the deputy director of the of the NGO Fédération Internationale des Droits de l'Homme. Every person interested in terrorism knows the NGO led by Danielle Mitterand has close relationships with PKK.
By the force of its relationships in the West, PKK became the world’s third largest narco-terrorist organization after Hezbollah and FARC. It secures transportation and distribution in the region covering Afghanistan, North Syria, and North Iraq. It administrates the circulation of narcotics with cocaine smuggling from Colombia to Europe and Turkey.