Around the world

March 22, 2013
By

bullet image Editorial: Legal pot: worth a try – Copenhagen Post

In a country that regulates the sale of over-the-counter painkillers, you’d have thought that a reasonable way to decriminalise the sale of cannabis would have long since been rolled out, perfected and exported to other cities grappling with the same topic. [...]

…mindlessly repeating the same mistakes of drug control is guaranteed to fail.

It’s time we take a different approach to cannabis. Like so many other things, you never know what will happen until you try.

bullet image Drug War Failing in Germany – Spiegel

Germany’s law-enforcement and legal apparatus devotes enormous resources to fighting illegal narcotics. But users are always a step ahead, and lawmakers seem uninterested in exploring alternatives to a broken system. [...]

When Leipzig, the prosecutor in Berlin, is asked for his opinion, he says that he could imagine a system in Germany involving the controlled administration of soft drugs, such as cannabis, to adults. The problem is that there is no political pressure in Germany, nor does the federal government have a drug czar who wants things to change.

bullet image New Zealand

The ever excellent Hungarian Civil Liberties Union interviews an official from New Zealand about the new approach they’re instituting to dealing with the ever-shifting introduction of new chemical psychoactive products. This is going to be something to watch in the future to see just how it’s done. It’s a bit scary in that it takes the position that the default is that any new product is banned unless it is proven “safe” (with no stated definition yet as to what that means).

bullet image Why is the U.S. Funding International Drug Rehabs Known for Torture and Abuse? – Alternet

The United States is not just funding an abusive drug war at home; taxpayer funds are propping up violently oppressive “drug treatment” centers that act more like detainment camps abroad. At the U.S.-backed Somsanga Rehabilitation Center in Laos, detainees are subjected to shocking physical abuse, including beating to the point of unconsciousness for showing withdrawal symptoms or attempting to escape. Allegations of sexual assault are also rampant. [...]

This June, the U.S. agreed to donate an additional $400,000 to the Somsanga center. US officials heeded no warnings issued by at least three separate reports (2003 UNICEF report, 2004 WHO report, and 2011 Human Rights Watch report), each of which warned against the center’s deplorable conditions and inhumane treatment of detainees. The UN report says past US funds have been used to build dormitories “to expand the capacity of the government to detain drug users, street children, and ethnic minorities,” as well as fences surrounding the center.

[Thanks to Transform]

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Pete Guither is the editor of drugwarrant.com

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