October 26, 2015
(ANTIMEDIA) Beirut, Lebanon — One of Saudi Arabia’s largest drug smuggling attempts has been foiled in Lebanon. According to a Lebanese official, authorities seized two tons of the amphetamine fenethylline before it reached the private jet of a Saudi prince Abd al-Muhsen bin Walid bin Abd al-Aziz Al Saud.
Speaking on the condition of anonymity, the official said the prince and four others were detained on Monday. According to the Guardian, fenethylline pills are prolific in Middle Eastern regions plagued by war, such as Syria, and are popular with ISIS fighters. The drug is often referred to as a “gateway drug.”
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Although the Middle East is more traditionally known for opium, the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime says use of amphetamines is on the rise in the region.
The U.N. office says Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Syria account for more than 55% of all amphetamines seized worldwide.
The drug smuggling attempt is the latest story in a slew of bad press for Saudi Arabia.
Another Saudi prince was recently accused of sexually assaulting three women in a Beverly Hills mansion. Presumably protected by association with the United States’ strongest ally in the Middle East, he was allowed to walk with impunity after being briefly arrested and posting bail.
As rumors persist that the CIA is aiding the opium trade in Afghanistan, news of the powerful U.S. ally smuggling amphetamines into other Middle Eastern nations only further discredits the official narrative about Western interests in the region.
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