Bakr Khader Jassim al-Subaihi – researcher

According to official statistics of the Supreme Council of the Judiciary, the number of persons arrested in 2021 was 11,789, of whom 328 were under age. Baghdad governorate came to the fore where (1933) the accused was arrested, followed by Basra (1871) and Babylon (1617), according to the Judicial Council. Fadel Al-Gharawi, a former member of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), points out that most of the age groups who use drugs fall between 15 and 35 years old and are considered to be the most vulnerable to drugs. The numbers officially announced for the 2022 year were the arrest of (14) thousand persons between abusers and shops, including (500 women) and juveniles, who were exploited by trafficking gangs for promotion and transportation. Drugs are most prevalent in poor areas and cities with automatic unemployment rates, with youth abuse in poorer areas reaching 70%.
Earlier, the Ministry of Health announced that the number of reviewers for private drug addiction health institutions had doubled, along with the quantities of contraband seized by the Ministry of the Interior. Drug traffickers target young people between 18 and 30 years of age and focus their activities on universities and schools, in light of the escalating warnings from the Ministry of disturbing and dangerous indicators indicating the exacerbation of drug trafficking and abuse in Iraq.
In 2022, the Ministry of the Interior announced a new census of the number of people arrested for drug trafficking and promotion in the country during the 10 months of the year. 360 kilograms of drugs and more than 14 million narcotic pills were seized. The Director of Information of the Directorate against Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances of the Ministry of the Interior said that the detachments of the Directorate General of Drug Control, at the direction of the Minister of Interior and the Undersecretary of the Ministry for Police Affairs, have developed a strategic action plan to target major drug traffickers and direct swift and painful strikes against criminal gangs. (1380 wanted) During October, the number of arrests rose in 2022 to 10 months (13680) Accused of trade, promotion, and abuse, including (350) juveniles and (190) women, as well as seizure and (360) kilograms of narcotic substances, more than (14) million and (500) 1,000 Captagon pills and psychotropic substances.
The Directorate-General for Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Affairs of the Iraqi Ministry of the Interior announced the dismantling of drug trafficking and promotion networks and the arrest of more than 1,000 suspects during the first 25 days of 2023. In a statement, the Directorate stated that it had carried out qualitative operations during the past days of 2023 in Baghdad and other governorates. According to judicial decisions, 1,104 persons accused of drug trafficking, promotion, transport, and abuse were arrested, 22,159 kilograms of drugs of various kinds were seized and 129,784 narcotic tablets and psychotropic substances were seized. The series of these dangerous figures on drug abuse and trafficking does not end to this extent. Those who follow the security scene can observe every week the latest frequent arrests of drug traffickers and users in Iraq, and the prevalence of manifestations (cultivation of narcotic plants) in some areas, until it has become an almost daily phenomenon that erodes the body of society.