Saudi Arabia announced that it had thwarted an attempt to smuggle 14.4 million amphetamine pills from Lebanon, according to state news agency SPA. The statement comes two months after that it prohibited imports of Lebanese agricultural produce due to the increasing drug smuggling.
Major Mohammed Al-Nijaidi, the official spokesman of the General Directorate of Narcotics Control (GDNC), stated that proactive security monitoring of criminal network activities involving the smuggling of narcotics into the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia resulted in the foiling of an attempt to smuggle 14,400,000 tablets of amphetamine into the Kingdom.
SPA reported that the pills were hidden inside of a pile of iron plates seized in coordination with the Zakat, Tax and Customs Authority of the Islamic port of Jeddah.
A Saudi citizen taking part in a smuggling operation was arrested in Riyad.
Drug trade and smuggling issues between Lebanon and Saudi Arabia continue to be a major problem in deteriorating two countries’ relations. Last month Saudi Arabia’s envoy to Lebanon, Waleed Al-Bukhari, said that over 600 million tablets were attempted to be smuggled out of Lebanon in the last six years. This drug traffic from Lebanon to Saudi Arabia has been linked to the Iran-aligned Shiite group Hezbollah.
After thwarting the smuggling of more than two million drugs disguised in Lebanese fruit shipments, Saudi Arabia decided to prohibit the import of fruits and vegetables from Lebanon in April. Following the seizure of huge amounts of drugs by Saudi Arabia, and also Greece, Lebanon has pledged to prosecute drug smugglers.