Under edition of Mr. NOGOIBAEV B.B, Director of Drug Control Agency of Kyrgyz Republic General-Lieutenant, Ph.D.
Group of authors:
Isakov Т.А. Chief of Legal Narcotic Substances Control and Drug Abuse Prevention Service of DCA of KR, Expert of UN International Committee on Drug Control;
Tokubaev R.B. Director of Republican Drug Treatment Center of MOH of Kyrgyz Republic;
Esenamanova A.T. Coordinator of MSMT Programs of Republican Drug Treatment Center of Kyrgyz Repiblic;
Zelichenko A. L. Director of Public Fund "Central Asian Center of Drug Policy", Ph.D.;
Estebesova B.A. Director of "Socium" NGO, President of "Partnership network" Kyrgyzstan Association;
Ishemkulov B. Specialist on Cooperation with NGO, Secretary of Country Multi-sector Coordination Committee on Socially-significant and Highly Dangerous Infections under Government of Kyrgyz Republic;
Iriskulbekov E. Projects Coordinator: "Bureau for protection of rights of people living with HIV/AIDS and vulnerable groups of population", Social Fund "Adilet" legal clinics";
Tezina N. Project Coordinator "Advocacy of drug policy from the part of civil society", Association of Centers for Civil Society Support;
Tokombaeva M. Executive Director, Association "Harm Reduction Network"
Ocheret D.A. Coordinator on Drug Policy, Eurasian Network of Harm Reduction.
National report is prepared for 52 Session of UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs by working group of leading specialists of interested ministries and authorities of Kyrgyz Republic, non-governmental organizations, acting in sphere of prevention of drugs and psychotropic substances abuse.
ADC of Kyrgyz Republic
Ministry of Health of Kyrgyz Republic
Ministry of Justice of Kyrgyz Republic
Group of authors
In the frames of present report Kyrgyz Republic is honored to introduce comprehensive picture of ongoing situation with:
• Illegal drug and psychotropic substances turnover,
• Drug abuse,
• Consequences and measures, taken by the government in order to reduce supply, demand and harm.
Also this report contains the results of national drug prevention policy in compliance with the Resolution, accepted on 9th Plenary Meeting of UN General Assembly XX Special Session from June 10th, 1998.
The problem of illicit drugs has three main components: (1) growth and production; (2) transportation and dope-peddling; (3) drug consumption and abuse. Kyrgyz Republic has organized resistance on all mentioned above directions: reducing deliveries of drugs in the country, activating the struggle with their distribution, preventing of drug consumption and lowering the drugs demand level. And from the end of 90th of the last century the country started to implement necessary measures on reducing harm from the use of IV drugs.
Taking into account that the main target of this UN Commission on Drugs Session is to evaluate the results of decisions, accepted in 1998, this National report also includes the review of the republican governmental and non-governmental organizations activity outcomes in context of the abovementioned Resolution.
I. Kyrgyz Republic drug problem history
It is assumed that on the territory of modern Kyrgyzstan narco situation aggravated three times:
• in the last third of XIX century,
• during the period since 1916 till 1974
• and starting from 1993 until present time.
These three periods fit the moments of Kyrgyz history when it was part of Russian Empire, then the USSR and sovereignty.
It is necessary to notice that narcotic substances in the Central Asia grew and were consumed long since. At the time of USSR Kyrgyzstan took one of the leading positions in the world on industrial production of high quality standard opium for medical purposes. In the period from 1916 to 1974 on the territory of modern Kyrgyzstan 98 cooperative and state-owned farms legally cultivated opium poppy and produced opium for medical needs. Total area of opium poppy fields made 64 thousand hectares, and volume by some calculations reached to 80 % made in the USSR and equaled 16 % of world legal production of opium.
Great part of produced opium leaked to the illegal market.
Because the authorities of the USSR couldn"t control the increasing wave of a drug addiction and trafficking, in 1974 there was made a decision on the termination of legal cultivation of an opium poppy. However, even after that the volumes of illegal drug turnover (mainly of cannabis group and in forms of pharmaceuticals) steadily increased. Vast fields of wild cannabis and ephedra are situated in the republic. Since the USSR period this circumstance has favored the hashish and marijuana production from plants of cannabis and also development of primitive "know-how" for methcathinone (ephedrone) proceeding from wild-growing ephedra for IV use.
Moreover, after gaining independence in 1991, the situation with illegal drug turnover is influenced by different aggravating factors: transparency of borders with Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, that are bordering Afghanistan directly, active migratory processes and inability of border guard and customs services to prevent the Afghani drugs traffic problem.
The situation, caused by the traffic of the Afghani drugs through the territory of republic, is aggravated with the negative social and economic circumstances connected with disintegration of USSR and general decrease of population living standards. These factors lead to involvement of wide parts of population (especially the marginalized part) to drug dealing and to steady growth of illicit drug users number.
In structure of consumed drugs from 1993 to 1996 prevailed the category "cannabis and other cannabis derivates", and with 1996 till 2000 "opium" occupies leading position. Number of heroin users steadily grows and since 1999 heroin strongly takes the third position in structure of consumed drugs.
It is necessary to note such phenomenon, as a polydrug addiction (polynarcomania). For the analyzed period on the basis of the Substance Abuse Service statistical data it is possible to draw a conclusion that the polydrug addiction has received wide circulation in republic and has the expressed tendency to growth (growth ratio = +6,9 %). So, in 2007 the given type of substances abuse has grown more than in 2 times in comparison with 1993 when registration of the given type of consumption started (12,7 and 5,5 on 100 thousand population accordingly).
In spite of the fact that the heroin addiction is rather "young" and has been officially registered for the first time in territory of Kyrgyz Republic in 1998, its prompt growth is observed from the moment of registration. From all revealed cases of a heroin addiction the 60.1 % had been registered in 2006-2007 (35,6 and 47,0 on 100 thousand population accordingly).
Quantitative analysis of the injection drug users, registered by Drug Service, showed clear increase tendency. In 1999 in comparison with 1993 drug usage has increased more than in 10 times, after 1999 number of IDUs decreased by one third, but growth rate still remains high (growth rate is +12%). However, these numbers more reflect the improved screening activities of the Substance Abuse Service of MOH of Kyrgyz Republic, and can not be used as an indicator of IDU number growth. In total the main peak of IV use of opiates growth fits to the 1999. According to UNODC estimated data (2006) there are 26 thousand drug users in the country and 25 thousand out of those are IDUs (96%).
According to medical statistics for 2007 the use of opium and opium derivates, especially heroin, prevails in consumption structure. Cannabis and its derivates are on the second place; on the third place is polydrug addiction. The tendency of inhaled substances consumption growths (household chemicals, volatile dissolvers, gasoline, etc.) also remains pressing. The most widespread method of drug use is injection, then, by prevalence, smoking and combined drug usage (Republican Substance Abuse Center, 2008).
II. Consequences of illicit drug use
The increase of opiates/opioids consumption is accompanied by increase of injection drug use level (IDU) and its consequences.
a) HIV/AIDS incidence
Problems, connected with injection drug consumption, are aggravated with other serious threats accompanying drug addiction - HIV/AIDS pandemic and other dangerous infections. For the February 1st, 2009 there are 2057 HIV-infected registered in the republic, 1381 (67.1%) out of those are IV drug users, 534 (26%) - people living with HIV infection registered in penitentiary institutions of Kyrgyz Republic.
Centralized state management in combination with low income level and poor resources of state healthcare system make the country a potential epidemiologic "burning point". That fact that in 2000 expenses on public health services per capita in the Kyrgyz Republic have made 145 US dollars, underlines weakness of an infrastructure of public health services in the country.1
b) Viral Hepatitis
According to sentinel surveillance study for the 2007, serum-prevalence of Hepatitis "C" in tested group of 898 IDUs was 50.9%. By gender 51.2% from them were males and 48.9% females. Out of 457 IDUs, positive to Hepatitis "C", HIV-infection was found in 63 cases, which means presence of co-infection in 13.8% of cases (Toktalieva R.Sh, 2008).
There is also data from AIDS laboratory service, according to which hepatitis "C" infection rate in tested IDU group in 2007 was 45.5% (Republican AIDS association, 2008)
c) Sexually transmitted diseases (STD)
Serum-prevalence of syphilis in tested group of 898 IDUs, according to sentinel surveillance study, in 2007 made 12.8%; sex distribution demonstrated that syphilis is more spread between females (30.8%) than between males (9.8%). Presence of sexually transmitted infections raises the risk of HIV-infection. Thus, between 115 IDUs, positive to syphilis, 9.6% appeared to be HIV-positive.
d) Mortality rate
According to data of Republican Bureau of forensic medical expertise, in 2007 number of deceased with alkaloids of drug substances found in biological material made 87 persons. The cause of death was intoxication (overdose) of drug substances/alkaloids of opiates group (Republican Bureau of forensic medical expertise, 2008). This indicator in comparison with previous ones is shown in Table 1 below.
Cause of death 2005 2006 2007
Opium alkaloids intoxication 13 77 43
Narcotic substances intoxication 20 21 41
Acute intoxication with opium alkaloids 6 7 2
Acute narcotic substances intoxication - 5 1
Total 39 110 87
According to Republican Substance Abuse Centre, 139 registered people with drug substances addiction were taken off the registry due to lethal outcome in 2007, which is 24.5% more than in 2006 (105 people).
e) Other consequences
In 2007 678 drivers were tested for narcotic or toxic substances intoxication, 63 (9.3%) out of them were in narcotic intoxication (Republican Substance Abuse Center, 2008).
III. Reduction of supply and turnover of illegal drug substances
a) Engaged agencies
Up to new challenges and threats, forms, methods and organizational structure of law enforcement bodies in response to narco-expansion were changed.
In 1993 by President"s of Kyrgyz Republic decree the State Commission for Drug Control (SCDC) under the Government of Kyrgyz Republic was established. It was national coordination body and had authority to control legal turnover of narcotic, psychotropic substances and precursors. In 2003 SCDC was reformed into the Drug Control Agency (DCA) of Kyrgyz Republic, operating in three main directions: (1) coordination of anti-drug activities of all governmental authorities in this sphere; (2) operational search activities and investigation of crimes, related to illegal turnover of drugs, psychotropic substances and precursors; (3) control of legal turnover of narcotic substances, psychotropic substances and precursors.
Besides the Drug Control Agency of Kyrgyz Republic, State Committee of National Security of Kyrgyz Republic, State Customs Committee of Kyrgyz Republic, Border Control Service of Kyrgyz Republic, and Prosecutor"s Office of Kyrgyz Republic also closely involved into fight against illegal drug turnover.
In frames of CIS, internal affairs offices coordinate their anti-drug activities under the authority of Bureau on coordination the struggle against organized crime and other dangerous types of felony on the territory of the CIS countries, founded by decision of Government Executive Board of CIS countries from September 24, 1993.
In the frames of Collective Security Treaty Organization (SCTO) there is Coordination council of heads of competent authorities for fight against illegal drug turnover. Members of SCTO are: Republic of Armenia, Republic of Belorus, Republic of Kazahstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Russian Federation, Republic of Tajikistan and Republic of Uzbekistan. Coordination council of heads of competent authorities for fight against illegal drug turnover of countries - members of SCTO was created in May 13, 2004.
In international frames law enforcement services work closely with organizations as "Interpol" and IDEC ("International Drug Enforcement Conference").
In March 2007 Government of KR approved project document of UN Office on Drugs and Crime N KGZI75 "Creation of inter-authority law enforcement - mobile operative groups in Kyrgyzstan (MOG)" in the frames of implemented program "Frames of Strategic Program for Central Asia". Work planned under this project is approximated for 3 years and is conducted by UN Office on Drugs and Crime Sector on illicit drugs and precursor"s turnover, human trafficking and migrants smuggling, weapon smuggling, contraband, and terrorism prevention. Responsible national authorities of Kyrgyz Republic are: Drug Control Agency, Ministry of Internal Affairs, Border Control Service, State Committee of National Security, and State Customs Committee. The goal of the project is to develop 10 mobile groups, deployed inside the country that would be able to fight drug trafficking, organized crime, and also collect and analyze information of criminal nature. The project develops mechanisms of struggling against illegal drug turnover and international criminality, and also provides with full spectrum of technical help in terms of vehicles, equipment, trainings on operative filed work, analysis of gathered criminal information on regional and national level.
b) Dynamics of statistics data on illegal drugs withdrawal
For the, passed from adoption of UN General Assembly Resolution S-20/3 "Declaration on the Guiding Principles of Drug Demand Reduction", law enforcement authorities of Kyrgyz Republic have done much to objectively reduce level of illegal drug supply.
Law enforcement authorities each year raise efforts on withdrawal of drug and psychotropic substances from illegal turnover. As it is shown on diagram 1, withdrawal of all kinds of drug substances for the period of years 1998-2008, raised by 4.6 times.
For the period from 1974 to 1993 in Kyrgyzstan mainly drug substances of cannabis group were ceased. However, starting from 1993, the period of Afghan opium and heroin narco-expansion began. And if in 1992 through the whole territory of Kyrgyzstan it was ceased only 5 kilograms of raw opium, in 1993 it raised to 154 kilograms, mainly of afghan origin. From that moment, volumes of withdrawn from illegal turnover opium were steadily increasing. In 2000 more than one ton of opium was ceased. But stepwise heroin supplanted opium in supply scheme. So, in 2007, 270 kilograms of opium were ceased, and in 2008 only 140 kilograms of opium were withdrawn from illegal turnover.
In parallel with opium, heroin started to appear on illegal market: in 1994 5 grams of heroin were ceased, in 1995 - 299 grams, in 1996 - 1 kilogram 100 grams, in 1997 - 4 kilograms 200 grams, in 1998- 24 kilograms 732 grams, in 1999 - 24 kilograms 759 grams, in 2000 - 206 kilograms. For the period until 2009 volumes of heroin withdrawal reached 200-250 kilograms yearly. In 2007 431 kilograms of heroin and in 2008 - 299 kilograms were ceased.
Drug substances of cannabis group have rich raw-material base in Kyrgyzstan. For example, around 100 hectares in Issyk-Kul, Jalal-Abad, Talas, Chui and Naryn regions are soiled with wild-growing cannabis. Out of it local population produces marijuana and hashish, which are sold both on local and on regional illegal markets.
In 2007 4 tons 468 kilograms and in 2008 5 tons 198 kilograms of drug substances of cannabis group were ceased in Kyrgyzstan. Moreover, in 2007 4 tons 28 kilograms and in 2008 3 tons 422 kilograms of marijuana were ceased. In 2007 440 kilograms and in 2008 457 kilograms of hashish were ceased.
c) International anti-drug cooperation
Kyrgyz Republic in full scale shares principles of complex and balanced approach to drugs related problems. Policy, conducted by our country proceeds from generally accepted principles and goals, confirmed in United Nations Charter and United Convention on drug substances (1961) and Protocol (1972), Convention on psychotropic substances (1971) and Convention of UN on fight against illegal turnover of drug and psychotropic substances (1988). The Republic has joined all these international legal documents and carries out a series of measures on implementation of their provisions into national legislation and law-enforcement practice. Being a fully legitimate member of UN, the Republic fully implements Political principles and Global Action Plan to Combat Drugs, accepted by UN General Assembly, and follows normative acts and requirements of ICDC.
In 1996 law-enforcement authorities of Central-Asian region (Kazahstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan) have signed the memorandum of cooperation in struggle against drug trafficking. Other coordinating agreements of CIS and Central Asia countries promote simplification of operations against organized crime conduction. Kyrgyzstan is one of the parties of Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) (May 4, 1996) between 5 Central Asian countries and UNODC, which was later adopted by Russia, Aga-Khan development network and Azerbaijan. Memorandum is urged to strengthen anti-drug cooperation in Central Asia and highlights following priority spheres:
1. mechanisms of coordination and cooperation;
2. harmonization of legislation in sphere of combating against drugs;
3. information sharing and strengthening of national capacities of analysis and intelligence in sphere of drug control;
4. combined operations;
5. gathering information on narcotic substance abuse, prevention and treatment of drug addiction
Kyrgyzstan signed all three anti-drug UN Conventions and Convention against transnational organized crime. In 2005 Kyrgyzstan joined UN Convention against corruption. The President of Kyrgyzstan also signed the Law "On combating terrorism and money laundry".
Thus, summing up this part of the report, it is possible to say that the state undertakes active efforts at all accessible levels - local, regional, international to put a barrier on ways of delivery of drugs from manufacturers to final consumers.
IV. Change of drug control policy focus
The experience, gained by Kyrgyz Republic in counteraction to spread of drug addiction, determined that only consecutive long-term strategy can really reduce drug trafficking, and also demand and harm from their use.
In consideration to abovementioned, Kyrgyz Republic developed and approved the Concept of counteraction to drug addiction and drug trafficking, and the third (starting from 1997) National program of Kyrgyz Republic on counteraction to drug addiction and illicit drug turnover for the period until 2010. This document contains detailed plan of actions that obliges all governmental institutes to participate in realization of National program, contains three main stages in struggle against drugs:
Stage I: 2005-2006 - reduce tempo of drugs spread.
Stage II: 2007-2008 - stabilize narco situation.
Stage III: starting from 2008 - to reduce level of drug addiction and to lower a turn of illegal drugs.
The Concept of counteraction to spreading of drug abuse and illicit drug trafficking to the Kyrgyz Republic reflects problems of strategic and tactical character, key directions of a state policy of drug addiction prevention, demand reduction, struggle against illegal production, supply and turnover of illicit drugs. There were developed special indicators needed for monitoring and the control over illegal consumption and a drug trafficking in the country. All responsible governmental authorities and wide range of interested public organizations took place in development of this Concept.
During the period between 2006 and 2007 in conformity with directions of the President of Kyrgyz Republic Bakiev K.S., sounded in June 2005 on the republican conference "Kyrgyzstan: to the future without drugs", government took course for humanization of drug policy towards modification of criminal and administrative legislative norms and elimination of excessive punitive tendencies.
This course is fulfilled through changes and amendments to Criminal Code, Criminal Procedural Code, Administrative Violations Code, Correctional Code, to laws "On Supreme court of KR and local courts", "On prosecutor"s office of KR", "On order and conditions of detention in custody of people, detained on suspicion and criminally accused", "On general principles of amnesty and clemency granting", etc.
The most important changes in drug policy took place in connection with increased spread of HIV/AIDS by injection drug use, especially heroin.
The threat of swift spread of HIV and other infections, inaccessibility of drug users for prophylactic interventions, have placed in front the necessity to find new effective strategies and approaches counteracting to drug dependency forming and prevention of drug abusing consequences.
Starting with 1998 Kyrgyzstan started to introduce strategy of reduction of harm, associated with illicit drug use, and to implement harm reduction programs.
Harm reduction strategy became topical in presence of persistent aggravating of sociopolitical and economic situation in the republic and limited capabilities to counteract drug spreading with traditional strategies of lowering demand and consumption.