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Bangladesh: Drugs worth $1.8M seized on Myanmar border

DHAKA, Bangladesh

Bangladesh’s border security forces on Sunday seized a huge quantity of narcotics worth $1.8 million in a pre-dawn raid on Myanmar border, an official statement said.

On a tip off, the Border Guards Bangladesh (BGB) raided a suspected boat in Naf River, which flows between Cox’s Bazar district, and Myanmar’s Rakhine state.

The smugglers opened fire, and managed to escape but left behind a haul of Yaba drug tablets, the BGB statement said, adding that there were three to four persons on the boat.

As many as 520,000 Yaba pills worth $1.764 million in the local Bangladeshi market were confiscated. A rifle, bullets and sharp metal knives were also seized. A criminal case has been registered, and manhunt for drug traffickers is underway.

Naf River has seemingly turned into a hotbed for smugglers and other cross-border criminals. Security forces confiscated over a million Yaba tablets worth $3.3 million in local market in two raids on Jan. 12 and Jan. 17 in the same area.

Thousands of people, particularly young Bangladeshis, have become hooked on red or pink Yaba pills in recent years, despite efforts against its use and smuggling. Yaba is a combination of methamphetamine and caffeine, and is said to be manufactured illicitly in Myanmar.

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