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  • Greece set to allow medical cannabis use

    The government last year authorised the import of several pharmaceutical products based on medical marijuana, as well as hemp cultivation for industrial purposes
    AFP (France)
    Sunday, January 14, 2018

    greece cannabis demoGreece's parliament is expected to approve the medical use of cannabis in the coming weeks, a deputy minister said Sunday, adding that the change would attract investment to the country. "In a few weeks' time, an amendment will be brought to parliament to define the legislative framework for the cultivation and manufacturing of pharmaceutical products based on , which will open the way for Greek and foreign investments," deputy agricultural development minister Yannis Tsironis told AFP. Tsironis said the legalisation of medical cannabis could attract investments of 1.5 to 2 billion euros ($1.8 to 2.4 billion), with Greek, Israeli and Canadian companies already expressing interest.

  • Legal marijuana cuts violence says US study, as medical-use laws see crime fall

    Murder and violent crime found to have decreased most in states bordering Mexico as drug cartels lose business to regulation
    The Observer (UK)
    Sunday, January 14, 2018

    The introduction of medical marijuana laws has led to a sharp reduction in violent crime in US states that border Mexico, according to new research. According to the study, Is Legal Pot Crippling Mexican Drug Trafficking Organizations? The Effect of Medical Marijuana Laws on US Crime, when a state on the Mexican border legalised medical use of the drug, violent crime fell by 13% on average. Most of the marijuana consumed in the US originates in Mexico, where seven major cartels control the illicit drug trade. The researchers studied data from the FBI’s uniform crime reports and supplementary homicide records covering 1994 to 2012. (See also: Mexico maelstrom: how the drug violence got so bad)

  • On the hunt for poppies In Mexico — America's biggest heroin supplier

    The farmers aren't financed by the cartels. The costs of eradication are absorbed by farmers
    NPR (US)
    Sunday, January 14, 2018

    Mexico's southwestern Guerrero state is now the top source of heroin for the American drug epidemic, which resulted in more than 64,000 overdose deaths in 2016, mostly from heroin or other opioids. The Drug Enforcement Administration says 93 percent of heroin analyzed by the agency in 2015 came from Mexico, more than double the amount from five years before. "The farmers are the ones who get exploited most. But if they aren't offered a better alternative, they'll just keep returning to poppy," says Lt. Col. Juan Jose Orzua Padilla. "I'm not justifying it, I just understand their needs."

  • Bahamas contemplates decriminalising marijuana

    CARICOM Regional Commission on Marijuana seeks to determine whether there should be a change in the current drug classification of marijuana thereby making the drug more accessible for all types of usage
    Jamaica Observer (Jamaica)
    Friday, January 12, 2018

    cannabis plantsA movement is building in the Bahamas to decriminalise marijuana. This follows a town hall meeting held here by the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Regional Commission on Marijuana. The initiative is one of several in  Caribbean countries, with some stakeholders eager to join other international communities and embrace the region's marijuana culture. The meeting is part of CARICOM's mandate to ascertain public opinion in CARICOM member-countries on the issue. The Commission was established by CARICOM leaders in 2014 with the objective being to conduct a rigorous enquiry into the social, economic, health and legal issues surrounding marijuana use in the Caribbean. (See also: Cabinet to discuss marijuana issue)

  • U.S. city mayors stand up for cannabis against Trump crackdown

    Activists say the regulated use of the drug is good for city economies and an important weapon in the fight against an epidemic of opioid abuse in the United States
    Reuters (UK)
    Friday, January 12, 2018

    City mayors in the two U.S. states with the oldest legal cannabis industries are leading the pushback against the Trump administration’s announcement of stricter enforcement, saying its regulated use is a boost to city coffers. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinded an Obama-era set of guidelines known as the Cole and Ogden memos, which indicated the federal government would not interfere with state cannabis regulations as long as the drug was not marketed to minors, trafficked by cartels, sold across state lines, or cultivated on federal land. Denver Mayor Michael Hancock and Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan were the lead authors of a Jan. 10 letter to Sessions from 10 U.S. mayors, including New York City’s Bill de Blasio.

  • Colorado’s Senators tell U.S. Treasury: Don’t touch marijuana banking

    Both Bennet and Gardner argued the 2014 rule has been a boon for both safety and industry oversight
    The Denver Post (US)
    Thursday, January 11, 2017

    U.S. Sens. Michael Bennet and Cory Gardner of Colorado have asked the U.S. Treasury to keep in place Obama-era rules that allow banks to serve marijuana companies — a preemptive move that follows last week’s surprise decision by the Department of Justice to rescind its policy that generally left alone from drug enforcement states that have legalized cannabis. Bennet, a Democrat, and Gardner, a Republican, sent a letter to Kenneth Blanco, who heads the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network at Treasury, with the request that he retain a 2014 agency decision that allows banks and credit unions to do work with the cannabis industry “so long as they conducted due diligence such as verifying that the businesses were in compliance with state law.”

  • Elio Di Rupo en faveur des cultures communales de cannabis

    Le président du PS veut s'inspirer du modèle néerlandais sur la réglementation des drogues douces
    SudInfo (Belgique)
    Jeudi, 11 Janvier 2018

    elio di rupo cannabisProduire du cannabis et le distribuer aux consommateurs sous contrôle des communes. La mesure a été adoptée aux Pays-Bas suite à l’accord du gouvernement Rutte III. En Belgique, le président du PS et bourgmestre de Mons, Elio Di Rupo, se montre favorable à long terme. En attendant, il tente toujours de mettre en place le projet pilote de « Cannabis Social Club » dans la cité du Mons. Inscrite parmi les 170 engagements adoptés par le parti socialiste en novembre dernier, la proposition visant un modèle belge de réglementation du cannabis est toujours d’actualité.

  • Portuguese doctors back marijuana medicine as bill enters parliament

    Reuters (UK)
    Thursday, January 11, 2017

    Portugal's influential Doctors' Association called for the legalisation of marijuana-based medicines, the same day parliament started to debate a draft bill that goes even further in seeking to allow patients to grow pot at home. Although Portugal boasts one of the world's most liberal policies on drugs and has legal marijuana plantations destined for export, it has trailed several EU countries such as Italy and Germany, as well as Canada and parts of the United States in the last few years on medical marijuana. Miguel Guimaraes, the head of the Doctor's Association, advocated legalising marijuana-derived medicines based on scientific evidence, but criticised the part of the draft law that would permit domestic growing of the plant.

  • If the U.S. legalizes marijuana, what happens to its international drug treaties?

    "Cannabis is the most vulnerable point in the whole multilateral edifice," said the executive director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime
    The Cannabist / Bloomberg View (US)
    Wednesday, January 10, 2018

    Harry AnslingerWhen Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinded a Barack Obama-era federal policy that allowed recreational marijuana in Colorado and Washington, he did more than reignite a domestic legal and cultural battle. He also highlighted a simmering diplomatic dispute whose outcome will shape U.S. ties with its closest neighbors and its ability to leverage international law: Whether the U.S. will comply with landmark conventions that — largely at Washington’s insistence — unequivocally prohibit recreational use as part of the global fight against drug trafficking. Allowing states that have legalized marijuana to keep blowing smoke about their adherence to the convention risks undermining all of them. (See also: Yes, legalizing marijuana breaks treaties. We can deal with that)

  • Investors are delusional when it comes to Canadian marijuana companies

    The model of state-run alcohol sales gives us an important clue as to why high-flying marijuana producers face tough times ahead
    Maclean's (Canada)
    Wednesday, January 10, 2018

    As the July deadline for the provinces to legalize marijuana approaches, the stock prices of Canadian publicly-traded weed producers have been on a tear. On Monday alone shares in Canopy Growth Corp., soared nearly 20 per cent. The surge in market value comes as firms try to position themselves with sufficient product to meet anticipated demand. But as these companies, some valued in the billions of dollars despite generating no profits, continue to attract starry-eyed investors, it’s worth examining what kind of opportunities will exist for these firms when provinces regulate retail pot sales. It is not difficult to predict profit margins will fall under regulation and that current market cap valuations are predicated on unrealistic expectations.

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