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05TELAVIV6848 2005-12-08 15:08:00 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Tel Aviv
Cable title:  

2005-2006 INTERNATIONAL NARCOTICS CONTROL STRATEGY

Tags:   SNAR KSEP IS ISRAELI SOCIETY 
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					  UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 04 TEL AVIV 006848 

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR INL, NEA/IPA
JUSTICE FOR OIA, AFMLS, AND NDDS
TREASURY FOR FINCEN
DEA FOR OILS AND OFFICE OF DIVERSION CONTROL

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: SNAR KSEP IS ISRAELI SOCIETY
SUBJECT: 2005-2006 INTERNATIONAL NARCOTICS CONTROL STRATEGY
REPORT, PART I

REF: SECSTATE 209558

---------------
Part I: Summary
---------------



1. Israel is not a significant producer or trafficking point
for drugs. The Israeli National Police (INP), however,
reports that during the year 2005, the Israeli drug market
continued to be characterized by high demand in nearly all
sectors of society and a high availability of drugs including
cannabis, ecstasy, cocaine, heroin, hashish and LSD. The INP
also reports a continuing demand for ecstasy in 2005, but a
lower level of seizure compared with 2004. The amount of
marijuana seized is less than half that in 2004, and there
was a slight decrease in the amount of hashish seized. The
INP reports that the amount of heroin seized has doubled
since last year and that the level of demand is unchanged.
The quantity of LSD seized in 2005 is considerably less then
the previous years. Widespread use of ecstasy by Israeli
youths is a continuing source of concern for authorities.
There was a decrease from last year in the number of offense
files for drug use, and possession not for personal use, but
for trafficking has increased. The number of drug arrests
for 2005 was 3,640 (Note: All 2005 data are for the period
January through October and were obtained from the Research
Department of the Israeli Police Headquarters, unless
otherwise indicated. End note.) In June 2002, Israel
ratified the 1988 UN Drug Convention. Israel's domestic law
contains the legislative requirements mandated by the
convention.



--------------------------


Part II: Status of Country


--------------------------





2. Israel is not a major producer of narcotics or precursor
chemicals. Israeli narcotics traffickers operating outside
of Israel continue to be deeply involved in the international
ecstasy trade. The Israeli National Police (INP) reports
that during the year 2005, the Israeli drug market was
characterized by a high demand in nearly all sectors of
society and a high availability of drugs including cannabis,
ecstasy, cocaine, heroin, hashish and LSD. The INP estimates
the annual scope of the Israeli market to be 100 tons of
marijuana, 20 tons of hashish, 20 million tablets of ecstasy,
4 tons of heroin, 3 tons of cocaine, and hundreds of
thousands of LSD blotters. Officials are also concerned with
the widespread use of ecstasy and cannabis among Israeli
youth, and say that drug use among youth mirrors trends in
the West. The INP indicates that most of the Hashish in
Israel now comes from Afghanistan and Morocco, which have
replaced Lebanon as the major source. Another source of
concern for law enforcement authorities is the synthetic drug
Gamma Hydroxybutyrate (GHB), and its analogues, Gamma
Butyrolactone (GBL), and Butanediol (BD), better known as the
Date-Rape Drugs which have been outlawed in Israel since 2004.



--------------------------

-
Part III: Country Action Against Drugs in 2005


--------------------------

-



3. Policy initiatives. In June 2002 Israel ratified the
1988 UN Convention Against the Illicit Traffic in Narcotic
Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (1988 UN Drug Convention)
after passing all the necessary laws to make Israeli laws
consistent with the Convention. In 2005, the INP continued
its general policy of interdiction at Israel's borders and
points of entry because the biggest quantities of drugs cross
into Israel from Jordan, Egypt, and Lebanon. Together with
the Israeli Anti-Drug Authority (IADA), the INP concentrated
specifically on the Jordanian and Egyptian borders, where the
majority of heroin, cocaine, and cannabis comes into Israel.
The INP and the IADA have jointly developed programs to help
Israeli youth, especially in the Arab community, where there
has been a marked increase in use of illegal drugs and
drug-related violence since 2004. Both organizations
continue to identify and investigate several major families
involved in the drug trade in Israel. In 2005, the INP
combined its investigations and intelligence units into one
branch called the Special Operations Division (SOD).



4. Distribution. Israel is not a significant distribution
point for illegal drugs.



5. Sale, Transport, and Financing. Israel is not a
significant seller, transporter or financier of the drug
trade but Israeli citizens abroad in locations such as
France, Spain, Germany, Denmark, Holland, and Belgium serve
as brokers and transporters of ecstasy to the U.S. and
elsewhere.


6. Asset Seizure. In 2005, authorities seized $2.5 million
in illegal drug related assets and cash.



7. Extradition. The INP indicate that no one was extradited
from Israel to the U.S. on drug-related charges in 2005. On
November 8, 2004 Zeev Rosenstein was arrested on suspicion of
involvement in worldwide drug deals worth millions of
dollars. On November 30, 2005 the Israeli Supreme Court
unanimously ruled that Zeev Rosenstein be extradited to the
U.S.



8. Law Enforcement and Drug-Transit Cooperation. DEA
officials characterize cooperation between the DEA and the
INP as outstanding. All DEA investigations related to Israel
are coordinated through the DEA Nicosia Country Office.
Through the Nicosia Office, the DEA and the INP conduct
coordinated investigations throughout the world. The INP has
liaison officers in Bangkok, Paris, the Hague, Bogota,
Berlin, Moscow, Ankara, and Washington, DC. Through these
offices, there were several significant joint investigations
conducted in 2005 leading to arrests of 36 Israelis abroad in


2005.



9. Precursor Chemical Control. Israel is not a significant
producer of precursor chemicals. Israeli Customs authorities
are active participants in "Operation Topaz" a UN program
that monitors the movement of precursor chemicals.



10. Law Enforcement Efforts. INP reports a high demand for
cocaine and a total of 158 kg. seized in 2005, a figure
almost six times that of 2004. In 2005, 7,000 kg. of
marijuana was seized, an amount far less than that of 2004.
In 2005, 730 kg. of hashish were seized, a quantity down
slightly from last year. The number of ecstasy tablets
seized in 2005 were 200,000, down one-third from 2004. The
level of heroin seized in 2005 was 140 kg., double the amount
in 2004. In 2005, 1,866 LSD blotters were seized, a drop of
more than 96.6 percent from the amount of blotters seized in


2004. There was a slight change from last year in the number
of offense files reported by the INP. In 2005, the INP
reported 15,427 files for drug use, 3,047 for drug
trafficking, and 5,233 for drug possession not for personal
use. Israel destroyed 686 illicit labs in 2005, compared
with 528 in 2004. The figure for drug arrests in 2004 was
4,340, dropping to 3,640 in 2005. In 2005, there were
several high profile drug cases. In one instance, the INP
arrested seven members of an ecstasy ring involved in
smuggling 90,000 pills from Europe. In another case the INP
seized 30 kg. of pure heroine at a border crossing between
Israel and Jordan, estimated at NIS 3.5 million (USD
777,777). In total there were 24,393 felony cases related to
the narcotic crimes.



11. Corruption. Israel does not explicitly or implicitly
support narcotics-related activities. Israel does not have
specific legislation for public corruption related to
narcotics.



12. Agreements and Treaties. In June 2002, Israel ratified
the 1988 UN Drug Convention after passing all the necessary
laws to make Israeli laws consistent with the Convention. In
1991, the U.S. and Israel signed a memorandum of
understanding calling for bilateral cooperation to combat
illicit narcotics trafficking and abuse. A dual taxation
treaty between the U.S. and Israel entered into force in
1994, which grants the U.S. tax authorities limited access to
bank account information. Israel is a party to the 1971 UN
Convention on Psychotropic Substances, the 1961 UN Single
Convention on Narcotic Drugs, and the 1972 Protocol amending
the 1971 Convention. A customs mutual assistance agreement
and a mutual legal assistance treaty are also in force
between Israel and the U.S. The Israeli Customs Department's
National Drug Enforcement Unit reports drug seizures to the
World Customs Organization. In December 2000 Israel signed
the UN Convention against Transnational Crime and it is in
the process of passing the necessary changes to Israeli law
required for ratification. In November 2001, Israel also
signed the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and Punish
Trafficking in Persons, supplementing this convention.
Israel is a party to the European Convention on Mutual Legal
Assistance in Criminal Matters. Israel regularly
participates in the Third Committee of the United Nations in
New York. Israel is one of 36 parties to the European Treaty
on Extradition and has separate extradition treaties with
several other countries, including the U.S. Under the
Israeli extradition law, as recently amended, all persons,
whether citizens or not, may be extradited for purposes of
standing trial for extraditable offenses. If the requested
person was both a citizen and resident of Israel at the time
the offense was committed, he may be extradited to stand
trial abroad only if the state seeking extradition promises
in advance to allow the person to return to Israel to serve
any sentence imposed. Israel is party to a number of other
bilateral and multilateral agreements that allow for
extradition and asset seizure. Israel cooperates with the
UNDCP. Israeli also has over 20 bilateral drug enforcement
agreements with nations around the world. In December 2005,
Israeli and Palestinian law enforcement officials met in
Egypt under the auspices of the UN and agreed to cooperate in
the war against illegal drugs, both sides decided to set up a
joint committee for continuing cooperation in the area of
intelligence on drug smuggling and treatment. Also, police
officials from Israel and Jordan met in Turkey under the
umbrella of the EU to discuss ways to fight drug trafficking,
and participated in a drug convention called Drug Smuggling
in the Middle East. Israel has not entered into any new
treaties in 2005.



13. Cultivation/Production. There is negligible cultivation
and production of illicit drugs in Israel.



14. Drug Flow/Transit. Israel is not a significant transit
country, although Israeli citizens have been part of
international drug trafficking networks in source, transit,
and distribution countries. Israeli officials are
particularly concerned about drugs being smuggled into Israel
from neighboring countries (Lebanon, Jordan and Egypt).
Israel also works with Germany and Holland to interdict the
flow of ecstasy, Turkey to interdict the flow the cocaine,
and South American countries to interdict the flow of heroin.



15. Demand Reduction. A number of both public and private
entities are working to reduce the demand for drugs through
awareness and prevention. The Israeli Anti-Drug Authority
(IADA) is one of the main governmental actors in this effort.
Its mission, among other things, is to spearhead prevention
efforts, initiate and develop educational services and public
awareness, and treat and rehabilitate drug users. It
coordinates with and directs the activities of a number of
government ministries involved in reducing demand. The IADA
also seeks to change the public atmosphere to counter
increasing social acceptance of recreational drug use.
Prevention programs target high-risk segments of the
population like the Arab sector, as well as youths, students,
backpackers, new immigrants, and others. The IADA offers
workshops and lectures for immigrants from Russia and
Ethiopia in their respective languages and tailored to their
particular cultural needs. The IADA is working to reduce
demand for narcotics among soldiers by providing officers
with the skills to combat effectively the use of drugs within
their units. There is an ongoing public awareness campaign
aimed at parents and designed to focus their attention on
their children's whereabouts and activities. The IADA also
concentrates on human resources development, including the
development of a professional infrastructure, and is
establishing a unified standard for training purposes,
including development of a curriculum for nurses, police,
prison employees, physicians, and counselors, as well as
other drug prevention, treatment, and enforcement
professionals. The IADA also performs basic,
epidemiological, and evaluative research in the narcotic drug
field. The INP participates in demand reduction initiatives
by lecturing at schools at all levels above 10 years of age
and in the army about the impact of drugs on the body and
mind.



--------------------------


Part IV: U.S. Policy Initiatives and Programs


--------------------------





16. Road Ahead. The DEA regional office in Nicosia, Cyprus,
looks forward to continued cooperation and coordination with
its counterparts in the Israeli law enforcement community.
The GOI is seeking to widen and build on relations with other
countries and has created an office of International
Relations within the IADA to pursue this objective. Israel
continues its four-year-term as a member of the Commission on
Narcotic Drugs (CND), which it joined in January 2004.



--------------------------


Part V: Statistical Tables


--------------------------





17. Drug Crop Cultivation. N/A


Drug seizures 2005 2004 2003


--------------------------



--------------------------


Cocaine (kg.) 158 28.5 66
Heroin (kg.) 140 70 51
Hashish (kg.) 730 900 N/A
Cannabis Resin (kg.) 729 913 900
Herbal Cannabis (kg.) 7,000 14,545 14,795
LSD (blotters) 1,866 55,561 28,331
MDMA (Ecstasy)(tablets) 200,000 300,000 7,658

2005 data represent January through October.
Source of data: Israel Police Headquarters, Research
Department


Drug Offense Files 2005 2004 2003


--------------------------



--------------------------


Use 15,427 15,919 15,162
Trafficking 3,047 2,714 3,160
Possession Not for 5,233 6,026 6,219
Personal Use

2005 data represent January through October.
Source of data: Israel Police Headquarters, Research
Department


Other Statistics 2005 2004 2003


--------------------------



--------------------------


Illicit Labs Destroyed 686 528 N/A
Arrests 3,640 4,340 3,616

2005 data represent January through October.
Source of data: Israel Police Headquarters, Research
Department



--------------------------


Part VI: Chemical Control


--------------------------





18. Israel is not a significant producer of precursor
chemicals. Israeli Customs authorities are active
participants in "Operation Topaz," a UN program that watches
the movement of precursor chemicals. Israel legislation
requires factories to have licenses for the import of
chemicals that can be used as precursor chemicals.

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