• Morocco votes ‘Yes’ in historic UN vote on cannabis

    Today’s vote marks the recognition of the medicinal value of cannabis, an important step towards ending prohibition that was rooted in racism and colonialism from the start
    Morocco World News (Morocco)
    Wednesday, December 2, 2020

    morocco flag cannabisThe UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) met to vote on several rescheduling recommendations on cannabis. Morocco provided an important “yes” vote to remove cannabis from the UN’s Schedule IV category of drugs that have limited or no therapeutic use. The vote concluded with a 27-25 majority, meaning that without Morocco’s “yes” vote, the cannabis recommendation likely would not have passed. “Morocco’s vote today means that the country has joined the community of forward-looking states recognizing the historical error of denying the medical usefulness of cannabis,” the Transnational Institute’s (TNI) drug policy expert Tom Blickman said. (See also: Potential fall-out from the vote on the WHO cannabis recommendations)

  • United Nations approves WHO recommendation to reschedule cannabis in historic vote

    Member states took almost two years to analyze the implications of accepting or rejecting the proposals
    Marijuana Business Daily (US)
    Wednesday, December 2, 2020

    un cannabis2The United Nations Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) accepted a World Health Organization (WHO) recommendation to remove cannabis and cannabis resin from Schedule IV of the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs. The historic vote could have far-reaching implications for the global medical cannabis industry, ranging from regulatory oversight to scientific research into the plant and its use as a medicine. The eagerly awaited approval of Recommendation 5.1 had a slim majority in favor with 27 votes for, 1 abstention and 25 votes against. The CND – the main drug policymaking body within the United Nations – turned down all five remaining recommendations. (See also: UN green lights medicinal cannabis but fails to challenge colonial legacy of its prohibition)

  • Controversial new EU drug agenda puts Europe, Morocco at risk

    A hidden process is underway to radically shift Europe towards a repressive new drug agenda that merges migration, counter-terrorism, and security
    Morocco World News (Morocco)
    Saturday, September 12, 2020

    frontex smallThe EU is planning to combine migration, counter-terrorism, and security in its new repressive anti-drug agenda that could have far-reaching consequences for Morocco. The European Commission has been developing this new strategy far away from public scrutiny. The drastic new drug agenda was only revealed after 29 civil society organizations spoke up in protest of the EU’s shadowy dealings. “It’s worrying because drug policy is now captured in the security agenda, just as counter-terrorism and illegal migration, it’s all being put in the same package,” Tom Blickman from he Transnational Institute said. “Supply control policies don’t work, it has been tried for more than fifty years. They have not worked in the past, do not work now, and will not work in the future.” 

  • UN body preparing for December vote on WHO cannabis recommendations despite coronavirus

    The focus of the meetings should be the “exchange of views among member states’ experts”
    Marijuana Business Daily (US)
    Thursday, May 28, 2020

    A document prepared by the chair of the United Nations Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) has laid out a course to keep on track for December’s key vote on the World Health Organization’s cannabis scheduling recommendations. This is positive news for industry stakeholders concerned about a possible delay stemming from the coronavirus crisis. While the likely outcome of the vote is not yet known, it could have far-reaching implications for the global cannabis industry. One recommendation, for instance, would recognize the medical value and a lesser potential for harm of cannabis at a U.N. level – making it easier for member countries to adopt medical cannabis programs.

  • Big source of illicit cannabis, Albania mulls legalising medical use

    For almost three decades one of the biggest sources of illicit cannabis in Europe, Albania is now considering legalising the drug for medical use. But experts warn it will not be simple
    Balkan Insight (Serbia)
    Monday, May 25, 2020

  • Global vote on cannabis as medicine expected to be delayed again

    The draft decision, tabled during an informal meeting last week, needs to be formally adopted by the CND this week
    Cannabis Wire (US)
    Sunday, March 1, 2020

    un logo cannabisThe United Nations Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) was set to hold a significant vote to reclassify cannabis as a medicine, a historic change to international drug control treaties drafted nearly sixty years ago. But that vote isn’t happening, according to a draft decision. “After politically tense and lengthy informal negotiations these past weeks, everything points to that there will not be a vote on any of the WHO recommendations this coming week,” Martin Jelsma, the program director for drugs and democracy at the Transnational Institute (TNI), said. "Several countries pushed hard to vote on and accept at least the deletion of cannabis from Schedule IV of the Single Convention, but in the end agreed to a compromise to postpone all, in return for a clear timeline for taking a vote within a year."

  • Conservative Aceh proposes cannabis legalization

    Those growing their own cannabis plants for medical purposes have been subject to criminal penalties
    The Jakarta Post (Indonesia)
    Monday, February 3, 2020

    indonesia cannabis acehCalls for cannabis legalization are on the rise in the conservative Muslim province of Aceh as local leaders believe the move will boost economic development in the region, where cultivation of the substance is already widespread. Indonesia, which has one of the strictest drug laws in the world, currently prohibits the possession and use of marijuana. According to the 2009 Law on Narcotics, marijuana is a type-1 narcotic, putting it on par with crystal meth and heroin, which are illegal for consumption including for medical purposes. A professor at Aceh's Syiah Kuala University, Musri Musman, said that allowing Acehnese people to cultivate the plant would improve the local economy. (See also: Be flexible: Islamic party lawmaker wants Indonesia to export cannabis)

  • De Caires has high hopes despite pace of Cannabis Commission!

    “We must not let the big guys come in and run this stuff because it defeats the whole purpose"
    The Star (St. Lucia)
    Sunday, November 17, 2019

    Andre De Caires of  the Cannabis Movement of St. Lucia is not satisfied with the pace at which the recently formed Cannabis Commission is working. The commission’s mandate is to “consult and provide advice on the design of a legislative and regulatory framework for cannabis”.  A workshop in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, facilitated by the Transnational Institute brought together activists and farmers’ representatives from across the region. Discussions centred on management of the cannabis industry in the face of the enormous influx of investment money from cannabis companies “that do not exactly share the interest of the farmers, and the development of the islands as their first priority”.

  • Canada’s cannabis colonialism

    Some of the practices of the corporate cannabis giants are reminiscent of the modus operandi that tarnished the reputation of Canadian mining companies abroad
    Toward Freedom (Canada)
    Wednesday, October 9, 2019

    canada dollar cannabis2Canadian weed companies have their eye on a massive prize: the lucrative medical and adult cannabis markets that are emerging around the world. Much of the hype around corporate cannabis is linked to the acquisition of lands and smaller growing operations internationally. The selling point is that cannabis can be grown overseas and exported to meet demand in Canada (and eventually the US), but also that Canadian companies position themselves as suppliers in emerging local markets. Lobbying to impact national legislation, supporting criminalization of traditional producers, and moving into remote territories with plans to implement plantation style economies are just some of the critiqued practices of Canada’s emerging cannabis sector.

  • A new ‘war on drugs’ is short sighted and naive

    There are options for taking a new path with like-minded countries
    Dutch News (Netherlands)
    Monday, September 16, 2019

    Forty years ago, the Netherlands was far ahead of its time. But today we see the country moving backwards, as evidenced by a recent report on the drugs culture in Amsterdam. The authors of the report, believe that Dutch society is ‘undermined’ by organised drugs crime, though it’s hard to say what the evidence is to support these conclusions. A new ‘hard approach’ – rather similar to the old approach elsewhere in the world – with more police powers must be deployed, in addition to stigmatising users, the report’s authors argued. The ban on drugs does not have the support of the majority of the Dutch. Most use is not problematic and users would rather buy their goods in a legal market, with quality guarantees and tax revenues to be spent on the people who do get into trouble.

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