Nearly 13 tons of heroin were seized in Turkey last year, an amount greater than that confiscated across Europe, an Interior Ministry official said yesterday.
"The amount of heroin seized in 2016 was 12,700 kilograms. This amount is one-and-a-half times more than that seized in the whole of Europe," the ministry's deputy undersecretary, Çetin Oktay Kaldırım, said.
Attending a "Fight Against Drugs" gathering in the southern Mersin province, he described illegal drugs as among the most serious problems of the century.
"As for ecstasy, we seized an amount [equaling] 60 percent of that of Europe. It means that our country is both a destination country and a transit country," Kaldırım added.
Stressing the importance of cooperation among international institutions and organizations combating illegal drugs, he indicated the need for support from nongovernmental organizations as well.
He underlined that during the last year, there had been a nearly sixfold increase in the number of drug suspects captured in Turkey.