Syria Becomes the Largest Producer of Captagon, A Globally Declared Illegal Substance

Syria Becomes the Largest Producer of Captagon, A Globally Declared Illegal Substance

A form of illegal amphetamine known as Captagon is reportedly produced and sold in Syria, a nation in Western Asia. Many nations have outlawed Captagon because of its potential health dangers and its ties to organised crime. It is erroneous to refer to Syria as the “biggest narco-state in the world” notwithstanding allegations of Captagon manufacture and smuggling there. This phrase usually refers to nations where the government has a significant role in drug manufacture and trafficking, which Syria does not have.

A highly addictive substance with serious health concerns is Captagon. Its reputation as “poor man’s coke” stems from the fact that it is less expensive than cocaine. Although there have been allegations of certain Syrians utilising the substance, it is untrue to say that the nation is wholly dependent on it for economic survival. Years of violence and economic sanctions have had a negative impact on the Syrian economy, but there are also many other elements that affect how long it may last.

On a worldwide scale, Syria has developed a reputation for being involved in the illegal manufacturing and distribution of narcotics. According to reports, this activity has allowed the nation to make large profits, with up to 90% of its foreign exchange gains coming from drug-related commercial operations.

Syria Has Become The Narco-State

According to Collins Dictionary, a “narco-state” is a nation where the illegal drug trade constitutes a substantial portion of the national economy. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has designated Captagon, a synthetic stimulant including amphetamine and caffeine, as an illicit substance as of 2021. The medication was first made available in 1961 by a German pharmaceutical firm, and its original uses included the treatment of narcolepsy, depression, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

After several years of manufacture, however, researchers learned about Captagon’s dangerous and addictive characteristics as well as its detrimental impacts on both physical and mental health. The substance was finally outlawed as a result.

Using Deadly Part Pills

Captagon is a common recreational drug, especially among young people in the Gulf states, yet many individuals might not be aware of this. Because it is said to give one a sense of invincibility, warriors have been known to use it sometimes. 

Captagon has really earned the moniker “Jihadi magic potion” and “Captain Courage” owing to the purported effects it has. Sadly, the drug’s addictive qualities can cause individuals from a variety of backgrounds to fall into its risky trap. This includes those who are attempting to reduce weight, students who are under test pressure, and people who work a lot of different jobs or long hours. 

What is the cost of Captagon Pills?

Captagon, a very hazardous medicine, only costs USD 1 to produce each pill. However, the cost of the drug skyrockets to between USD 14 and USD 20 per tablet as a result of the involvement of several participants in its distribution, including smugglers, troops, secret police, corrupt officials, and warlords who engage in bribery and extortion.

Captagon is said to be most often transported to the Gulf area from Syria, which is also the drug’s major manufacturer. Despite having a cheap production cost, Captagon is a profitable business for those involved due to the high pricing brought on by its shady distribution network.

The Captagon Act

Due to Syria’s considerable involvement in the illicit drug trade, various nations have put bans on any business with the country. The Captagon Act was proposed by the US last year in reaction to the predicament, designating the medication as a “transnational security threat” and linking it to the Assad government in Syria.

Captagon smugglers have been using inventive techniques to disguise the illegal substance, including putting it into milk packets, egg rolls, cardboard rolls, cartons, and containers for fresh fruit and machinery. In certain cases, the drug has been concealed in international shipments of goods, such as milk and tea shipments. These smugglers continue to avoid discovery in spite of authorities’ best efforts, which presents a serious challenge to law enforcement.

Millions of Captagon Pills Exports

At Istanbul’s Ambarli Port in August 2022, customs agents seized a cargo container containing 12.3 million Captagon tablets, totalling 2.09 tonnes in weight. In the meantime, in a warehouse in Riyadh, Saudi police found 47 million narcotic tablets concealed in a consignment of wheat. Additionally, along the border with Iraq in December of the previous year, Jordanian Customs officers seized 1 tonne of amphetamine tablets that were being smuggled. Nearly 10 million Captagon tablets were recently seized by Lebanon’s security squad in April 2023, on their way to Senegal and Saudi Arabia.

Captagon has been produced, smuggled, and distributed illegally on a number of occasions, which are frequently linked to the Syrian government and several unauthorised attempts. The 4th Armoured Division is mostly in charge of the manufacturing and distribution of Captagon, while Maher al-Assad, the younger brother of Bashar al-Assad, has been connected to these activities at every point.

Q1: Which amphetamine is being largely produced in Syria?

Ans: According to reports, Captagon, a kind of unlawful amphetamine, is made and distributed in Syria.

Q2: How much profit did Syria make through Captagon?

Ans: The country has benefited greatly from this activity, with up to 90% of its foreign cash benefits coming from drug-related business ventures.

Q3: Which ways the Captagon smugglers are using to export in different countries?

Ans: The illicit drug has been concealed by captagon smugglers using clever techniques such as stuffing it into milk packets, egg rolls, cardboard rolls, cartons, and containers for fresh fruit and machinery.


  • Pritipalit

    Priti Palit, an accomplished edtech writer, boasts a wealth of experience in preparing candidates for multiple government exams. With a passion for education and a keen eye for detail, she has contributed significantly to the field of online learning. Priti's expertise and dedication continue to empower aspiring individuals in their pursuit of success in government examinations.

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