Countries With Harsh Narcotics Policies

To clamp down on the possession, use, abuse and distribution of narcotics, countries enforce various laws; however, it’s not a one size fits all. This is because narcotics offenders in some jurisdictions face considerably higher fines, longer jail terms and even worse, when they are caught.  The five countries mentioned here have a zero tolerance policy and harsh sanctions regarding these illegal substances. Offenders face the full brunt of the law.

1. Indonesia

Indonesia has a below zero tolerance policy where illicit substances are concerned. Tourists to Jakarta are welcomed by a sign that reminds them that their lives will not be spared if narcotics are found in their bloodstream. Users and dealers should consider themselves lucky if sentenced to decades behind bars, if they value their lives. A law passed in 2009 requires parents to notify law enforcement if their child uses narcotics. The entire family can suffer cruel penalties as a result of failing to comply.

2. Dubai

The use, possession and smuggling of narcotics are illegal and are severely punishable in Dubai. There are many prescription medicines and over the counter medicines that are legal in other parts of the world but possession of these can land you in jail in Dubai. Persons who need to take these medications must have their prescriptions in their possession at all times. Visitors to the country who must have certain prescription medicines must seek permission from the UAE Ministry of Health and have their prescription on hand. Possessing even the smallest amount of illicit substances can result in a prison sentence for several years and visitors can be deported. Failing tests for such substances means you’re going to jail for quite some time.

3. Iran

Iran is known for its incredibly harsh penalties when it comes to not abiding by the country’s narcotics laws. Iran enforces capital punishment for the possession of some types and amounts of narcotics. In 2021, there were 132 such cases. For persons caught with these substances in Iran, the best case scenario is a substantial fine and imprisonment. Over sixty percent of their prisoners are in for the possession of illicit substances. There have been individuals caught using or in possession of small amounts of narcotics who received a public beating of up to seventy strokes.

4. Vietnam

Anyone found guilty of trafficking narcotics in Vietnam is executed. The vast majority of Vietnamese who face capital punishment are as a result of this sought of activity. While in some ways Vietnam’s laws may seem progressive and not as harsh as some of the countries we already talked about, it can still be brutal. Persons convicted of narcotics offenses are placed in rehabilitation centers that are essentially forced labor camps. Not really progressive, is it? Addicts housed in these dreadful institutes receive no counseling or treatment, and they are only required to work. They are subjected to brutal physical punishments if they refuse to work.

5. Singapore

In Singapore, littering is considered a serious crime and offenders are severely flogged for it so you can imagine what punishment awaits someone who is caught selling narcotics. Yes, you guessed right. Their lives are in jeopardy. Suspected abusers are forced to remain at a rehabilitation center for about six to thirty-six months. Even a relatively small amount is not tolerated. In some cases, persons can face imprisonment of between one to ten years and or a fine of more than $20,000.   

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