Swiss Clear the Way for Cannabis Legalisation

Discussion in 'Marijuana News' started by Superjoint, Mar 10, 2001.

  1. Breaking News
    Source: Reuters

    The Swiss government on Friday endorsed a draft law that would legalise the consumption of marijuana and hashish and allow a limited number of "dope shops." The bill submitted to parliament seeks to bring Swiss law into line with the reality that one in four people aged 15-24 regularly gets high in the Alpine state, according to a poll commissioned last month by the Swiss government.
    "Decriminalising the consumption of cannabis and the acts leading up to this takes account of social reality and unburdens police and the courts," the government said in a statement.

    The cabinet agreed in principle in October to legalise dope smoking. It has now recommended that police be allowed to turn a blind eye to people growing and trading small amounts of soft drugs, arguing that this will make it easier to differentiate between small and large-scale production and export of drugs.

    "A certain number of shops could be tolerated as well as the growing of hemp and the production of cannabis products, to the extent that conditions laid down by government decree are fulfilled," it said.

    The cabinet also proposed a flexible approach to prosecuting use of other illegal drugs while still adhering to international treaties to fight drug abuse.

    Swiss voters in 1998 rejected a proposal to legalise all drug consumption, possibly because Switzerland already has one of the most liberal approaches in Europe to treating heroin addicts -- providing free drugs and needles to junkies who do not respond to other forms of addiction therapy.

    Switzerland once had the dubious honour of hosting Europe's largest open heroin scene in Zurich's "needle park," but city officials drove it underground in the mid-1990s after the park became a mecca for Europe's drug addicts.

    Source: Reuters
    Published: March 9, 2001
    Copyright: 2001 Reuters Limited

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