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Philippine Travel Advisory

Discussion in 'Marijuana News from The USA' started by RMJL, Jun 20, 2004.

  1. Newsbrief: Philippine Travel Advisory


    With Filipino politicians competing with each other to come up with ever more severe measures to combat drug use and trafficking, the Philippines is deep in the throes of a full-blown anti-drug hysteria. Motivated primarily by an effort to stamp out methamphetamine, or "shabu," as it is known locally, the Philippine drug war also targets other illicit drugs, including marijuana, and has led to mass arrests, massive drug testing, and death squad-style executions of suspected drug offenders (http://stopthedrugwar.org/chronicle/236/vigilantes.shtml). Now, according to a report in the Manila People's Journal, Philippine drug fighters are turning a jaundiced eye toward foreign tourists and resorts popular with young Westerners.

    The newspaper quoted Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency undersecretary Anselmo Avenido Jr. as saying his agency, styled after its US name-sake, has stepped up efforts to find and arrest tourists bringing even personal recreational amounts of illicit drugs along with them on vacation. "We're regularly conducting 'profiling of individuals' who might be carriers of dangerous drugs even in small quantities," he said.

    According to Avenido, police have arrested "a number" of foreign tourists for smuggling small amounts of drugs into the country in the last two years. Police had reports of shabu, marijuana, and ecstasy sales on Boracay Island, he added. Boracay, home of decadent nightlife as well as stunning beaches, is a popular destination among travelers on the Southeast Asian leg of the hippie trail. But while the Philippines, like many of its Southeast Asian neighbors, remains in the grip of harsh prohibitionist drug policies, travelers might want to think twice.


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