Ankara: Europol’s report ‘misleading’

Ankara: Europol’s report ‘misleading’

Ankara: Europol’s report ‘misleading’

The report on organizaed crime is ‘flawed,’ says spokesman Gümrükçü. DAILY NEWS photo, Selahattin SÖNMEZ

The Turkish capital has voiced regret over a recently released report on organized crime in Europe, which suggested that Turkey’s borders with the EU remain vulnerable despite an intense law enforcement focus. The report also states that the vast majority of heroin in the EU transits through Turkey and is trafficked from its origin to destination markets by organized Turkish crime groups.

Ankara’s reaction against the 2013 EU Serious and Organized Crime Threat Assessment (SOCTA), released last month, came on April 4 with Foreign Ministry spokesperson Levent Gümrükçü describing the report as “flawed and misleading.”

“Turkey is one of the countries which takes the most serious measures in the counterdrug fight,” he said, citing the World Drug Report 2012 released by the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime, which stated that Turkey was the second country for highest heroin seizures at 13 tons, after Iran at 27 tons. “The fact that two out of every three kilograms of heroin is seized in Turkey, or with the intelligence support of Turkey, confirms this fact,” Gümrükçü added.

Opportunity for Europe

“It is expected that European countries appreciate that this decisive fight is being conducted by Turkey with big sacrifices. This situation also provides an opportunity for the European countries to use their police sources or budget in other areas. This is because while the total heroin seizure rate in EU countries in the last decade declined by three to four times, it increased by three to four times in Turkey. It is obvious that Europol’s report is flawed and misleading,” he also said.