SOHR exclusive | Hezbollah, 4th Division and security services involved in smuggling narcotics to Jordan
Smuggling of narcotics, mainly captagon, continues from Syria to the Arab Gulf through Jordan under supervision of the Lebanese Hezbollah and involvement of the 4th Division which run networks including tens of smugglers whose work concentrates in Al-Suwaidaa desert and have strong ties with tribes in Jordanian territory.
Al-Sha’ab village in Al-Suwaidaa desert is a major set off point for smuggling operations to Jordan, amid reports confirming the presence of compressors and factories for manufacturing illicit drugs depending on the Lebanese Hezbollah to get raw materials.
It is worth noting that , the most prominent drug dealer in south Syria “Mar’i Al-Ramthan,” who was killed in an airstrike in May 2023, hailed from this village.
Meanwhile, the 4th Division works on facilitating the delivery of drugs to north Al-Suwaidaa countryside, where they are stored in warehouses to the west of Municipal Stadium in Al-Suwaidaa, before the 4th Division coordinates with the affiliates of the military intelligence services and other groups to transport shipments of narcotics to positions on the Syria-Jordan border, such as Al-Mughir, Al-Sha’ab, Kherbet Awwad and Wadi Khazmah.
According to SOHR sources, a man known by his initials as F. B., who is affiliated with the Lebanese Hezbollah in Al-Suwaidaa and carries a security card issued by the 4th Division, is in charge of transporting drugs from Damascus to the northern countryside of Al-Suwaidaa, while two other persons, who had been officials in Al-Bostan Association in Al-Suwaidaa, supervise those operations.
The narcotics shipments are delivered to two persons known by their initials as F. S. and A. S., who are responsible for smuggling those shipments to Jordan with the participation of others.
On the other hand, the military security branch in Salkhad town provides logistical services, security cards and medium and light weapons to smugglers.
The smugglers use different ways to transport illicit drugs. Here are some of those ways:
- Routes used for smuggling narcotics: smugglers travel to Jordan on foot with the shipments of illicit drugs.
- Drones: small amounts of illicit pills are tied to drones which are flown to Jordanian territory and they are unloaded in areas a few kilometres away from the border strip, before flying the drones back.
Between early January 2023 and late August 2023, the Jordanian army documented 88 operations of smuggling narcotics with drones. In addition, the Jordanian army foiled 194 infiltration and smuggling operations in the same period.
SOHR obtained a list of names of people involved in smuggling operations, including 20 prominent Syrian figures who work in smuggling illicit drugs to Jordan for the benefit of the Lebanese Hezbollah, and they are from Al-Suwaidaa and Al-Suwaidaa desert and Bedouin tribesmen from Jbib, Al-Mulayhat Al-Sharqiyah, Al-Mulayhat Al-Gharbiyah and Al-Harak in Daraa.