First Published: 2010-12-21

 

Key members of Sahara drug ring captured are from Polisario

 

Drug traffickers arrested in Mauritania, Mali following action of Sahara states to stop drug smuggling to Europe.

 

Middle East Online

'Already transported many tons of drugs'

BAMAKO - Suspected drug traffickers arrested in Mali and Mauritania this month are key members of one of the Sahara's largest drug networks, security sources said Monday.

"On Sunday we arrested another person at the border between Mali and Algeria," said a Malian official involved in the fight against drug trafficking.

"At this stage of the investigation, we can say that with Mauritania we have captured the main members of one of the biggest drug trafficking networks in the Sahara."

A Niger security source in Bamako also described the ring as "one of the major drug trafficking networks" in the Sahara region.

He added that it was known as "Polisario" because 90 percent of its members come from camps of the Polisario Front, which is fighting for the independence of Western Sahara from Morocco.

On December 7, the Mauritanian army said it had killed two men and captured seven during a raid on a band of drug traffickers on the eastern Mauritanian border with Mali.

Two days later Malian security forces arrested six "major" drug dealers in the Sahara desert.

"It is a network which, according to our estimates, has already transported many tons of drugs across the Sahara towards Europe," said a Malian security source.

At least seven people in the network are being held in Mauritania and two others in Mali.

The alleged leader of the group, a Sarahwi called Sultani Ould Ahmadou Ould Baddi, was hit by a bullet in the abdomen during his arrest in Mauritania, the source added.

 

US, Russia split on Syria’s Aleppo carnage

Gunman kills prominent writer on steps of courthouse in Jordan

Trump says he'll recognize Jerusalem as Israel's 'undivided' capital

British FM begins key Turkey visit

Famous archway collapses on Moroccan beach

Bulgaria court error delays trial over Hezbollah bombing

Two Turkish soldiers killed in PKK attack

Oman court closes national newspaper, jails three journalists

Oil prices rise modestly ahead of OPEC meeting

Qatari official banned from AFC vote

Death toll from Egypt migrant shipwreck jumps to 168

Warplanes pound Aleppo ahead of UN Syria meeting

Dubai drops charges against Briton who promoted charity

Israel sentences Islamic cleric for incitement

Turkey sets precondition for joining US Raqa operation

Campaigning for parliamentary polls begins in Morocco

EU mission to train Libya coastguard faces delay

Mosul offensive to start in ‘next few weeks’

New wave of air strikes pummels Aleppo

US, Russia trade blame for collapse of ceasefire in Syria

Hadi vows to ‘extract Yemen from claws of Iran’

Obama vetoes bill allowing 9/11 families to sue Saudi Arabia

Morocco asks to rejoin African Union

Air raids pound rebel-held Aleppo

Turkey arrests prominent writer brothers

Egypt shipwreck death toll rises to 133

Gulen says will return to Turkey if US backs extradition

Occupation troops shoot, wound Palestinian with knife

UN eyes alternate aid delivery route for Syria's Aleppo

Iran condemns Saudi strikes in Yemen

Turkey's Erdogan says US arming Syrian Kurds

Obama to block Saudi 9/11 prosecution

Oil prices ease as focus shifts to producers' meeting

Opposition 'minister' among 12 dead in Syria car bomb

'13 dead' in clashes with IS in Libya's Sirte

20 civilians killed in Yemen rebel port raid

Turkish border town hit by rocket fired from Syria

Syria's White Helmets win Swedish human rights prize

UN pleads with Assad over food aid stuck at Syria border

Rouhani jabs USA over nuclear deal in UN address

Dozens more feared dead in Egypt boat tragedy

US breaks 'taboo' on Iran trade, banking

Kuwait MP gets new jail term for insulting Gulf rulers

Kuwait MPs demand urgent debate on petrol price hike

Dozens of rebels leave Homs under deal with Assad regime