Counter Narcotics Unit seized more than 15,000 kg of hashish
Lebanon's largest drug bust lines entire football field
The Lebanese Internal Security Forces carried out the biggest drug bust in the history of the country when they confiscated more than 15,000 kg of hashish from a warehouse, the forces announced on Sunday.
Images on social media showed rows of white packages containing the drug lining up an entire five-a-side football field.
“This is the biggest bust in the history of Lebanon with regards to drugs produced and prepared to be sold,” The Telegraph reported, citing an anonymous ISF source.
The raid was carried out on Friday in the rundown coastal district of Ouzai, where the hashish, which was due to be smuggled abroad, was discovered inside emptied-out paint buckets.
The buckets belonged to a paint company that was not involved in the smuggling operation, the forces said.
The raid led to the arrest of members of an international drug ring, the security forces said in a press conference on Sunday evening. They are being held under interrogation while the investigation is ongoing.
Despite government's strict drug repression policy, Lebanon has gained popularity for its high-quality hashish and large production of it. Drugs seized in these kinds of operations are usually burnt.
Also on Sunday the ISF announced they had dismantled a separate international network of cocaine smugglers, including four Italians, two Brazilians, one Argentine and One German. The latter is believed to head the network.
The ring reportedly smuggled the cocaine by placing the substance inside bottles of spirit, which were then carried by the gang members in Duty Free bags. Once in Lebanon the alcohol was evaporated, revealing the illegal substance.
The security forces Counter Narcotics Unit of Lebanon operates under the Ministry of Interior and is in charge of countering drug trafficking and drug abuse throughout the country - they refused to comment further when contacted by The National.