Experts warn against new deadly drug spreading in Turkey
ISTANBULExperts have warned against a new liquid drug spreading in Turkey that makes users lose their consciousness when consumed in two or three drops.
The use of Gamma-butyrolactone (GBL) has been on the rise in Turkey despite prohibitions, daily Habertürk reported June 25.
Customs and Trade Minister Bülent Tüfenkci on June 23 drew attention to the increase in the usage of GBL, which is sold in bottles that look like cleaners.
Addiction to GBL, which is being used as a sexual stimulant and which has been determined to be a very dangerous drug in lab examinations, is sharply increasing in Turkey. It is sold for around 200 Turkish Liras and is consumed by dropping it into drinks.
While one drop has the effects of a strong drug, two or three drops can result in drinkers losing their consciousness, prompting experts to warn about the possibility that GBL could be used in sexual assaults or robberies.
Drug dealers have been selling GBL, which is odorless and transparent, in tiny bottles.
As a result of the ministry’s efforts, GBL was added to the list of banned materials on June 4, 2016, but is still being smuggled into the country from Lithuania, Poland and Hong Kong.
According to the daily, authorities have determined that suppliers have been sending GBL to consumers in Turkey by disguising it as cleaning products, such as shower gels and kitchen cleansers, after receiving orders through their websites.
A total of 17 separate anti-GBL operations were carried out in Turkey and over 32 kilograms of GBL ready to be placed on the market were confiscated.
Some 21 people were detained in the operations, including engineers and architects.
The use of GBL is also common in foreign countries although the liquid is also banned in many of them.
In 2009, medical student Hester Stewart, 21, was found dead in bed after she had taken GBL for the first time in Britain. Her parents subsequently launched a successful campaign to ban the drug in Britain.