International Journal of
Sociology and Anthropology

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Sociol. Anthropol.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2006-988X
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJSA
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 305

Full Length Research Paper

Drug situation in Iran, with emphasis on content analysis of newspapers

Mahvash Janmardi
  • Mahvash Janmardi
  • PAYAM NOOR University, Department of Sociology, Islamic Republic of Iran.
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 27 March 2014
  •  Accepted: 19 March 2015
  •  Published: 30 April 2015


Addiction damages compensation for the non-acceptance of the human population is below the break in economic, social, political, cultural life, increased crime and insecurity. Growing trend of drug abuse and promotion has occupied the mind. It is currently research in recent years. To get rid of addiction requires scientific and practical investigation. This study aims to describe how drug is used in the provinces of Iran using content analysis. In the review of the literature of three papers, respondents’ cosmic perception on drug abuse was selected. The most appropriate method of content analysis was used to select the 1999 year study of the most important event in the political, social and economic year. According to statistical data, heroin was mostly used in Fars and Yazd provinces, followed by morphine, cannabis and opium; the highest percentage of drug was found in Khorasan, Sistan and Baluchestan provinces. Most of the users were arrested in Tehran Province. The highest percentage of merchant of deaths is recorded in the province. The highest percentage of drug discovery area is airports. Most trafficking gangs have been arrested in the province, and most of the drugs are found in cars. More youths are involved in drug use and burning materials. Congress measures and decisive actions of the government are being taken.

Key words: State, drugs, arrests, merchants of death, place of discovery.


The development and progress of a program at different levels is required, but in every community there are numerous specific and general issues that are threatening factors to the path of development.

Since drug affects a person's social commitments and threatens the health of an individual and society, it is seen as a social pathology (Karbasi and Vakilian 1998).

The prevalence of drug addiction and social damage is most important in society. It results in injuries irreparable, breaking of values, ethical standards, personal life and the collapse of community life. The   community problems not only include its ideals and values, but also its economic, social, cultural and political life. There is acute growing number of consumers of drug in Iran and the world over.

In addition, there are various articles on the effect of narcotic in order to reduce crime and increase safety of citizens. Every year significant portion of human and economic resources of the communities directly and indirectly   is   allocated   to drug control. Trade volume estimated in the world is on narcotic article and arms. Thus, smuggling and illegal markets have massive profits with a portion of individuals involved; and there is no control over their speculative activities there. Also, use of narcotic article and addiction threaten human and social capital; this leads to the prevalent risk of the efficiency and creativity of the young force communities and breaking of social and familial relationships (Serajzadh, 2002:  92).

Drug addiction and social disorders in the community lead to break of values, ethical standards, personal liability and life, community life and irreparable damage to society. It is not only the ideal values of a considerable part that threaten the life of a community, but also the economic, social, cultural and political difficulties in the community. A growing number of consumers increase the acute nature of the problem.

It is proper to recognize addiction and provide comprehensive solution in the Iranian society; the necessity of any transactions requires research paper that aims to provide cognitive picture of drug abuse situation in the province of the country. 




Creation song is dramatic increase in injuries and social problems, correlation and convergence of economic problems, political, social and cultural failure, unhealthy economic activities, lack of balance and income distribution, lack of facilities for the majority of people and lack of social security risks in several community.

Addiction and narcotic article can impose losses on any society, because of non-applicable sales, distribution factors and manpower. There is intensity of crime because addicts resort to bouncing things to get illegal substances.  The prevalence of corruption in the society is high coupled with the enormous costs of fighting it. One of the most difficult problems of addiction is perverseness. The increasing number of drug addict adversely affects distributors and consumers each year; increases poverty and reduces productive workforce. The community is faced with low economic, social, political and cultural growth.


Research need

Addiction is one of the main known social problems. This is because Behavior is associated  with  negative  social  harm  of  protests  and  collective  conscience  of valuation. Iran is among countries of the world, that for over two decades, has been dealing with narcotic article problems. In the past two decades, the country determined to solve and manage drugs problems by running programs based on credible research. But, research on this field has not been given much attention (Serajzadh, 2002: 112).

Addiction and   risks of different population groups have threatened to break the boundaries of gender and age. Phenomenon of drug addiction is a shocking warning and some shortcomings of social, economic, cultural and political system not suitable for the community. The barrier function of the fundamental elements of a  role  has  jeopardized  the  safety  of  the  community,  disrupting social  order.

Poverty, social exclusion, low prices of drugs, especially heroin have contributed to increased consumption. According to statistics, average of about 200 tons of narcotic articles are discovered and around 700 to 750 traffickers are murdered annually.  200 members of security forces of the country were murdered (Raise, 1982:105).

In such cases of narcotics, police strategic plan will fail due to financial and human constrains.  Factors such as characteristics of local, regional and national groups in the form of diverse cultures and subcultures and various forms of trauma in the community will lead to the failure of the effort to stop addiction and drug dependence. Addiction as a social problem is deeply rooted in the culture, politics and economy of a society, as well as individuals’ personality, and even on international structure. There is need for a research on understanding the young population and providing comprehensive solutions in this regard. The present study  seeks  to  describe  and  present  a  picture  of  the  drug  situation  in  the provinces of Iran.


Research objectives

The research objectives were achieved by using content analysis and documents method to describe, explain and review the historical process of the quality of narcotic article currently in Iran.



Research conducted in Iran and other countries indicate    the importance of the issue of addiction in a society.  The   research on this topic in other communities is much than done in Iran. But limited research in Iran has often been done in the form of academic work. Research done by Piran shows that poverty, lack of reasonable demands and satisfaction, severe  social  transition,  severe  mobility  class,  values  and  goods  being  imposed on certain patterns, social frustration, death, alienation, personal and mass disasters, earthquake, flood, war, famine , tyranny, traditions and pressure on are factors  that cause  social stress on  the  individual and community groups (Piran, 1989: 63).

The studies indicate that addiction is related to age, education,  parental   inconsistency,  addiction  of  others, lack of leisure, healthy living, unsafe sexual life, social and economic pressures, frustration, social class, migration, abundant drugs, inability to adapt to new cultures, tensions and urban disparities, recreation, unhealthy conditions, smoking history,  family  conflicts,  drug  abuse  in  the  family,  lack of  fixed  employment,  social disorders, poverty, severe social class mobility, alienation, individual and collective disasters, tyranny, traditions  and severe social transition In Iran. Research results show that the people more prone to addiction in other societies are within the age group of 20- 27 years.


Narotic condition in Iran

In human history, the desire to use hair is controlled by changing one’s mental state of pain and sorrow. However, today is different from the past in overcoming drugs; drug is used in many cultures due to historical record.

Narcotic article was continuously used until after Safavihe, where opium was commonly used in tea-house. But gradually the pressure of international organizations and governments create limitations for addicts. With the propagation of the Ghajar period and publishing of new ideas, people with knowledge and educated Europe realized the losses caused by narcotics, particularly opium and pipe were in circles, and injurious to private parties (Ravandi, 1982: 241).

Since Shah Ghajar’s elastic proliferation, addiction slowly became a social issue that threatened legislation to control the consumption of this substance (Piran, 1989:   235).

After the events of September 1941, there was limited exclusive care, in the last years of World War II; later, trafficking of Opioid became more prevalent, beginning a new era for fighting against Opioid addiction. Finally, it resulted in the formation of the UN Fight Forum against alcohol and opium and other factors (Ravandi, 1982: 249).

Government agencies expanded, grew and sold opium openly to those smoking it in 1950;   this was effective in enhancing drug.

Poppy cultivation and taking of opium were banned by the Parliament and Ministry of Health In February 1955; consequently, a marked decrease in the number of consumers was obtained (Ravandi, 1982:  249).

Laws abolished in the country, scattered population, lack of supervision, administration and corruption led to the involvement of foreigners’ cultivation and then to patients and opium addicts using coupons. After the August 28 coup in 1959, heroin found in the community became more prevalent among the urban upper class. After a few decades, 40 heroin addicts were found in Tehran and then slowly were found in major cities, expanding the field of addiction to heroin. But heroin turned into acute social problems in the decades and then solar revolution reached its peak. So, consistent and widespread fight against it is a vital necessity (Piran,    1989: 235).

In the 1960s, heroin was fast spread in the country. Excess drug use caused the law to punish perpetrators of aggravated drug trafficking in addressing crime in 1968. This was approved by Parliament in 1969.  According to the law, the penalty for traffickers and traders was death. The law says that when people bring more than 10 grams of heroin and its derivatives into the country to maintain or sell, they will be executed (Ahmadvand, 1995: 23)

Islamic revolution led to the collapse of previous regime, limited controls at least for  a  while; after that  a  lot  of  heroin  and  opium  were imported into  the  coun-try and distributed. Undoubtedly, it promoted addiction as one of the ways to defeat the revolution and to make young people imperialists; cheap heroin in large quantities was available. After the revolution, most of the main suppliers of the materials made heroin and opium price to come down. Opium increased in the previous regime and this made homes unsafe. Heroin addicts were young people in Iran (Piran, 1989: 237).

After the Islamic revolution and changing social, cultural, political structures, the rule of Islam on society legal bill that intensified narcotic article penalty was adopted in 1980. It included prohibition of cultivation, death sentence in case of repeated  cultivation,  death  sentence  for  importers and  manufacturers  and sellers of drugs, confiscation of all movable and immovable property of persons committing crimes. The law obliged the government to establish maintenance and treatment centers for drug offenders, to provide employment opportunities and education for professional addicts after leaving prison, to address drug crime by authorities and courts act.

Ministry of Health and Welfare in 1984 declared eight hundred thousand addicts in the country i.e increase in 9 years with equivalent of one hundred percent (Piran, 1989: 39).

Since 1988, it is found that the most important steps related to drugs include creating databases with borders, trafficking station destruction, eradication and follow- up of trafficking gangs that have been perpetrated. Despite continuous efforts to combat this problem, the growing trend in the population continues. Statistics addicts in 1379 and the estimated probability are 65 and 30% randomly (Raiss, 2002:   94).

Statistics mention not only understanding the issue of addiction, its depth and necessity, but also demonstrate the important duties of fighting against acute drug problem in Iran.

Opium has a long history and people consume opium for different reasons. Addicts are prone to various effect of drugs on micro, median and macro levels: psychological and social pressures, making oriented force in Iran throughout history, limiting factors, suppressor, personality and family stress caused by incompatibility and rupture of family, divorce, passivity and vanity in society, lack of adequate conditions for the occurrence of individual talents and interests, internal and external conflicts of the community structure of political instability resulting from foreign domination and internal conflict, lucrative drug trade, in the transportation of narcotics, curious population of youths using drug especially in Phoenix, extensive social relations with each other, drug-trafficking gangs, drug abundance and easy access to it, unemployment and poverty in unfavorable conditions of economic insecurity spirituality and morality in society, unfair distribution of wealth, high social class divide in society, war and economic crisis, unfair distribution of resources in different regions of the country, lack of  law  enforcement, old habits in specific regions of the country's opium, general weakness of collective participation in society and lack of optimum utilization of resources to meet the needs of people.


For the research objectives, content analysis methods were used. Although resorting to bounce addiction resources, content analysis lacks basic theory as a starting point for production of theoretical concepts and abstract theory. The review of newspaper headlines shows that Hamshahri, Kehane and Atleaat universal information is related to drug addiction. To obtain the   best   form   so   desired, Tuesday newspaper   was   selected   for   the analysis.

Categories in the first news of the manifest content in the study questionnaire and newspapers including arrest, being killed by merchants, drug discovery, the proceeds of drug discovery, drug embedded devices, smuggling gangs arrested, burned material values, measures taken and proposals are discussed in order to obtain better results in parallel; that is, quantitative data transferred into a table next to the categories and the frequency of qualitative information used. Frequencies quoted in any manipulation have come to act and content of news contained in the same categories was counted in a newspaper.


Based on the obtained data, 70.35% heroin was  discovered in the  Fars  Province; 9.48%, in Hormozgan Province; 5.49%, in Tehran Province; 3.16%, in Khorasan Province; 3.09%, in Sistan   -   Baluchistan. 

57.58% morphine was discovered in Yazd Province; 14.16% in Tehran Province; 10.9% in  Azerbaijan of the West Province; 8.53% in Kerman Province; 5.49% in HORMOZGAN province; 1.26% in Khorasan province; 1.17% in Sistan – Baluchistan, Golestan, Gilan, Fars, ISFAHAN, ILAM provinces, West Azerbaijan; few percents are allocated to other provinces without morphine.

23.91% cannabis was discovered in Khorasan Province and Tehran Province; 23.14 and 19.73% in   Sistan – Baluchistan Province and Hormozgan Province; 17.66,0/05% in Bushehr Province; 2.78% in Mazandaran Province; 1.99% in Golestan Province; 1.86% in Fars Province; 1.06  in Yazd Province; the percentage  is  very  low in Isfahan, Khuzestan, Semnan, Kermanshah, Lorestan, Gilan Provinces.

40.09% of opium was discovered in Khorasan Province; 24.67% in Sistan - Baluchistan Province; 12.76% Tehran Province; 7.6% in Hormozgan Province; 2.84% in Fars Province; 2.31% in Kerman Province; 2.14% in Lorestan; 1.6% in Kermanshah Province; 1.25% in Khuzestan Province and 1.11% in Lorestan Province.

The highest percentage of drug discovery in the country is in 1999: In Khorasan Province 29.8% was discovered; 18.61% in Sistan - Baluchistan Province; 12.95% in Tehran Province; 12.21% in  Yazd  Province; 7.55% in Hormozgan Province; 5.83% in Fars Province; 3.44% in Kerman Province; in other provinces less percent was discovered.

54.03% addicts were arrested in Tehran Province; 22.42% in Sistan - Baluchistan Province; 5.28% in Lorestan Province; 2.14% in Yazd Province; 1.75% in Mazandaran Province; 1.67% in Hormozgan Province; 1.45% in Hamedan Province; but was low in other  provinces.

Casualties and damage caused by this crisis are different in provinces: it was 79.38% in Khorasan Province; 4.48% in Sistan and Baluchistan Province; 3.59% in Tehran Province; 2.69% in Hormozgan Province; 2.24% in Yazd Province; 2.24% in Kerman Province; 1.79% in Lorestan Province; 1.79% in Kurdistan.  Highest percentage of traders in Kermanshan, Gilan and Mazandaran province were killed.

Based on the frequency table on drug discovery, 0/0 38% was discovered at the airport; 20.7% in the railway; 17.2% at home; 17.2% in the mountains and desert roads and 6.9% in the shop. Airport and railway have the highest frequency because they are the safest place to transport materials.

Most bands traffickers arrested belonged to the Khorasan Province with 24.87 percent; 21.46    in Tehran Province; 17.07 percent in Sistan and Baluchistan Province; 14.63% in Hormozgan Province; 4.87% in Kerman province; 4.39% in Yazd Province; 2.92% in Mazandaran Province; 2.92% in Lorestan Province and 1.95% level in other provinces.

Considering the importance of transportation security, drug trafficking gangs try to reduce the risk of transporting the materials to the desired places; 0.046% are discovered in cars; 12.9%  in the stomach; 10.8   in bags and baggage; 10.1   in food boxes; 4.3    in belt and shoe heels; 3. 6% on postal shipments; 2.9% in household appliances; 2.9% in book cover; 2. 2% in frames; 2.2% in camel hump; 1.4% in clothing and     0.4%     is embedded in post card.

Since the discovery of drugs, the highest percentages  of  drug destroyed by military means  are thus:  Tehran  province  has 47.67%; 23.68% in Sistan and  Baluchistan Province; 9.13% in Khorasan Province; 3.97% in Hormozgan Province; 3.27%  in Yazd Province;  2.79%  in   Fars   Province;   1.44%   in   Kermanshah  Province; 1.33% in the Province; 1.08 in Kerman Province and 1.05 in  Hamedan Province.

On statistical data discovered drug, opium was 71.61%; of morphine, 20.4%; heroin, 5.23% and cannabis, 2.79%. The highest percentage of drug discovered is opium and morphine in the community. Rate of degradation has caused problems in the society in terms of distribution and consumption of   narcotics in the country.

According to statistical data, there was 22.5% tendency for use of drug by youths, 12.5% increase in social injuries, 0.010% lack the ability to treat addicts, 0.010% involve heavy costs to prevent transit of narcotic drugs, 0.010% for being alone in the fight, 7. 5% for broken drugs,

0.05% for increase in women's tendency to drugs, 0.05%  for creating insecurity in society, 0.05% for  drug  trend  revenue, 0.05%  for poor  laws,  2.5%   for  security  distributors, 2.  5% for politicization of narcotics and 2.5% for incorporation of major drug traffickers in prison and consequences resulting from addiction in Iran.

Based on statistical data regarding the most important discussed measures for controlling drugs, Narcotics Conference seminar has18.07%, burning of drugs is 18.07 percent; MOU international signing is 13.25%; 9.64% in education plan for Prevention of Addiction; 8.44% for opening of drug consumption centers; 6.02% for addicts cleaning public places; 4.84% for twenty-nine thousand drug treatment; 4.84% for children’s protest march; 3.61% for credit allocation to combat drug; 2.41% for training of dogs for fighting; the percentage of quantitative census also includes obstruction of carrying drugs across the country’s borders and aggravated trafficking article, the opening of storage centers for girls’ addicted families, giving police officers the right to discover drug addicts, opening of regional information exchange and combating trafficking cartels in the country’s borders.

Based on one-dimensional table, ways to combat such drugs has been proposed. 30.82%  involve dealing firmly with the government's merchants of death, 14.8% for involving the police, 12.35% for prevention of combat, 8.64% for drug law reform, 6.17% for military presence in East regions of the country, 6.17% for firing of employees from the structure of drug administration, 4.93% for people participation, 4.93% for against drug trafficking, 3.7% for educating the drug population on the harms of drug; 3.7% for inadequate detention and arrest, 2.5% for global cooperation and 1. 24% for courses taught in schools on addiction.


 In the neighborhood of Afghanistan, there is local production of opium and cannabis, and part of Gold Crescent, Turkey is the critical path for trafficking drugs. Pakistan is one of the major manufacturers in the world and part of Gold Crescent has the highest percentage. Addition has caused 60% damage to Sistan and Baluchistan border, 30% to north of Khora Taybad and 10% to Oman and the Persian Gulf.

Far Yaz, Sistan and Baluchistan Hormozgan, Khorasan,   Kerman,   Tehran   provinces   are  at  risk  of addiction than  other provinces. Little  distance  between  origin  and  destination  and  profitable expansion  of  its  distribution  in  different  regions  of  Iran  has  had  many  effects. Statistics compare drug loss, waste of police discovery and manpower, trafficking gangs and involvement of military officers, the number of detainees and how secondary transverse transport materials scenes and drug fields in the country.

Addiction problems are so deep in the community in three levels- micro, median and macro. Therefore, developing national development model, long-term strategy, short-term training conditions, unemployed persons in community, public education through formal institutions, especially the country's mass media, research studies on the reasons for addiction in the country at various levels, the inclusion of education in schools and university units, individuals engaging in social activities, political and cultural order to prevent drug abuse in society are essential (Figures 1-3).





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Ravandi M (1982). "Social History of IRAN", VOL. VII, Tehran, NEGAH publications, third edition.


Serajzadh SH (2002). "Drug Abuse in Methodological Issues", Tehran, Iranian J. Sociol. 4(1):91-115.