State Customs Committee of Uzbekistan uncovered attempts to smuggle drugs jointly with the UNODC-supported Border Liaison Office (BLO) at Ayritom border crossing point

As a result of a multi-stage operation conducted by the Uzbek State Customs Committee jointly with the BLO officers at Ayritom border crossing point, a group of drug smugglers who attempted to smuggle in total over one kilogram 242 grams of hashish and 430 grams of opium into Uzbekistan were detained.

Suspicious foreign objects were found during a customs inspection at Ayritom border crossing point located in Uzbekistan’s Surkhandaryo Region in the abdominal cavity of a foreign national who had arrived from a neighboring country.

The examination resulted in finding and extracting a total of 44 capsules containing 430 grams of opium.

The operation further conducted with the participation of the State Security Service and internal affairs agencies resulted in capturing other drug smugglers – members of the same criminal group:

Following this incident, the second drug smuggler was detained at the same border crossing point. Thirty-four sealed oval-shaped capsules with 650 grams of hashish were found and extracted from his abdominal cavity.

Shortly afterwards, the third drug smuggler was detained at this border customs checkpoint. After scanning, 31 sealed oval-shaped capsules containing over 592 grams of hashish were found and extracted from his body.

The operation continued in Tashkent and resulted in the detention of the alleged offender in one of the city’s hotels. The detained smugglers allegedly planned to deliver the seized drugs to him.

The customs authorities have initiated a criminal case for offenses committed, and an investigation is underway.

BLOs are established at the key border crossing points in the Republic of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Republic of Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan as part of the Border Cooperation Component of the UNODC Programme for Central Asia designed to counter the trafficking of Afghan opiates through the northern route. It is the first project to establish BLOs in Central Asia, and its stakeholders are the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Border Guards, Customs and Drug Control Agencies of each country.

Since its launch in May 2016, the Border Cooperation Component has been conducting a series of training courses for Ayritom BLO officers, amongst others, on documents profiling and verification of individuals crossing borders, risks profiling, IBM i2 intelligence analysis software application, and new types of synthetic narcotics to strengthen their capacities to address and counter cross-border crimes effectively.

The component is funded by the Government of Japan.


For all inquiries, please contact

Nurangez Abdulhamidova,

Communication and External Relations Officer

UNODC Regional Office for Central Asia (Dushanbe)

Email: nurangez.abdulhamidova[at]