An Iranian writer close to the Revolutionary Guards has
threatened to inundate the EU countries with drugs – a recognition that the
terrorist regime and Revolutionary Guards deal in smuggling and promoting drugs
This came against the backdrop of the statement by the French ambassador in Washington about the fate of the nuclear agreement and the Europeans’ demand to implement the financial mechanism to circumvent the US sanctions.
“The Europeans do not want to pay any cost, and they either wait for US President Donald Trump to get in the way, or Tehran will be subject to the terms of a new agreement,” the editor of Iran’s Etemad newspaper, Ali Mirfattah, wrote in a lengthy article.
“Tehran has tools to put pressure on the Europeans, including abandoning the fight against drugs arriving to Europe from Afghanistan,” he said. “Then Europe will drown in drugs, which until now has been prevented by the Iranian regime.”
Revolutionary Guards and drugs
In October 2014, the German police seized an Iranian truck laden with 330 kilograms of heroin smuggled in pickled cucumbers and garlic, which was valued at €50 million.
Italian police announced in November 2018 that a ship carrying 270 kilograms of heroin had been seized at the port of Genoa, the largest seizure of drugs in nearly 20 years.
An Italian police spokesman said the ship had sailed from the Iranian port of Bandar Abbas and docked in Hamburg, Germany and Valencia, Spain before arriving at the port of Genoa on October 17. Italian police seized the heroin shipment, which was en route to the Dutch city of Roosendaal by way of Switzerland, France and Belgium.
Methods of smuggling
An international investigation revealed the methods used by the terrorist Quds Force to smuggle drugs into Europe. On November 17, 2011, Iran’s Revolutionary Guards used their own logistics company like shipping and aviation companies in smuggling operations.
In the summer of 2016, the Revolutionary Guards used tomato paste cans to transport up to 200 kilograms of heroin in a truck to Europe, but the shipment, which is coming from Iran to the Netherlands, was seized at a value of €9 million on the border between Turkey and Bulgaria.
Meanwhile, a US Congressional report released in 2012 revealed that Iran and Hezbollah had links with drug trafficking gangs in Mexico.
In a secret telegram from the US embassy in the Azerbaijani capital of Baku on June 12, 2009 and published by WikiLeaks in January 2016, US diplomats noted that Iran is considered one of the world’s biggest drug smugglers. The country is the largest buyer of Afghan opium and one of the largest heroin producers in the world. The diplomats confirmed that 95% of the heroin exported to the European market comes from Iran via Azerbaijan.
After tracking the Iranian smuggling network, Interpol confiscated four Revolutionary Guard boats, where large quantities of drugs were discovered, which were to be transported to Australia and New Zealand.
The level of poppy cultivation increased from 8,000 hectares in 2001 to 123,000 hectares by 2010, reported an Afghan news agency in May 2011, adding that Iran pursues a policy that encourages drug production in Afghanistan, while the Revolutionary Guards have intervened to smuggle drugs into Iran in preparation for their transfer to world markets.
Objective of smuggling
According to observers, the drug trade is the means used by the mullahs to maintain their dictatorial rule inside Iran and to use as a card to extend their external influence, particularly in the countries of the Middle East, with the task of smuggling entrusted to the Revolutionary Guards.
A report by the Iranian opposition revealed that drug smuggling is one of the means by which the Iranian regime funds its spreading of wars. In November 2011, The Times reported that the smuggling of drugs generates billions of dollars for the Revolutionary Guards annually.
The second objective of the drug trade is to carry out terrorist operations, as revealed by the US Department of Justice and the FBI in October 2011, terrorist Quds Force paid $1.5 million through drug trafficking gangs in Mexico to bomb a restaurant in Washington with the aim of assassinating the Saudi ambassador.
Another major scandal involving the Revolutionary Guards trafficking drugs occurred in Germany in 1994, where it was discovered that the Iranian regime was sending drug proceeds to Europe to buy and smuggle nuclear equipment, including uranium, in order to obtain a nuclear bomb. A network of secret German officials known as the “drug buyers” and agents of the Iranian regime in Germany was also discovered, and one of the leaders of this network was a former deputy oil minister in the Iranian regime.
Iran’s consulate in Bonn was the center of information for this network, the German intelligence service revealed, pointing out that the network transported drugs by buying a small airport in Germany.
According to Iranian expert Mohamed Banayah, the Iranian regime uses all illegal tools in the war of survival and that the Revolutionary Guards play a major role in the drug trade in Iran, the countries of the region and Europe, having a wide network of drug trafficking links from Afghanistan in the east to Arab countries, Europe and the African and Latin continents, which allows it to smuggle drugs in any region of the world.
The EU and the Arab countries, especially in the Mediterranean area, must coordinate their security in order to curb smuggling to Europe, he added.