Afghanistan, already the world's top opium supplier, is now the world's biggest producer of cannabis, according to United Nations drug experts. There is large-scale cultivation of the drug in half of the country, resulting in 3,500 tons of hashish worth an estimated £61m annually, according to the first assessment of cannabis in Afghanistan by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime. It warns that the threat from the drug needs to be dealt with to deny the Taliban the millions they make in protection taxes paid by farmers and drug smugglers. The focus on opium has resulted in cannabis being overlooked, according to Antonio Maria Costa, executive director of UNODC. "A concentration of cultivation in the southern part of Afghanistan shows that the Taliban and those insurgents that control the southern parts of the country are not only funding themselves by trafficking opium but also by trafficking cannabis. It's the same area."
Tag Archives | Cannabis
From the Huffington Post:
The Maryland Senate voted on Saturday to allow patients access to medical marijuana at state-licensed dispensaries. The bill now moves to the state’s lower chamber.
The bill was approved overwhelmingly, with bipartisan support and without objections or discussion, by a 35-12 margin.
Maryland would join 14 other states in legalizing medical marijuana. The neighboring District of Columbia legalized it in a 1998 referendum that was only recently allowed by Congress to go into effect. The District’s city council is writing rules to establish the city’s medical marijuana policy.
Current Maryland law allows defendants charged with pot possession to cite a medical necessity defense. If a judge deems the drug to be beneficial, a maximum hundred dollar civil fine is imposed.
Lawmakers and advocates argued that the law unfairly forced patients to obtain marijuana in the black market. The new law would bring
[Read more at the Huffington Post]
You may have heard there's a push to legalize marijuana in California. You may not have heard that it's for real. Voting ballots in California this November will contain an initiative to legalize, tax, and regulate the sale of marijuana to adults 21 and older, and while this may sound like something that has no chance, whatsoever, of ever becoming law, the thing is: it actually might.
Since 2004, California has given out more than 36,000 medical marijuana cards. The number of these cards going to children – it appears that all of the known cases are teenagers – is not known, as doctors are not required to report medical marijuana cases.
However, experts say medical marijuana cards going to minors are on the rise. Parents must accompany children under 18 requesting medical marijuana to this doctor’s appointment, the New York Times reports.
Even with this precaution, the fact that children can get medical marijuana is creating quite a controversy.
[Read more at NYDailyNews.com]
… Read the rest
The United States’ first marijuana cafe opened on Friday, posing an early test of the Obama administration’s move to relax policing of medical use of the drug.The Cannabis Cafe in Portland, Oregon, is the first to give certified medical marijuana users a place to get hold of the drug and smoke it — as long as they are out of public view — despite a federal ban.
“This club represents personal freedom, finally, for our members,” said Madeline Martinez, Oregon’s executive director of NORML, a group pushing for marijuana legalization.
“Our plans go beyond serving food and marijuana,” said Martinez. “We hope to have classes, seminars, even a Cannabis Community College, based here to help people learn about growing and other uses for cannabis.”
The cafe — in a two-story building which formerly housed a speak-easy and adult erotic club Rumpspankers — is technically a private club, but is open to any Oregon residents who are NORML members and hold an official medical marijuana card.
From BBC News:
Three more government advisers have resigned after the home secretary’s sacking of his chief drugs adviser Prof David Nutt, the BBC has learned.
Dr John Marsden, Dr Ian Ragan and Dr Simon Campbell have quit the Advisory Council for the Misuse of Drugs after two others left earlier this month.
Members of the council had met Alan Johnson seeking reassurance that their independence would not be compromised.
Mr Johnson dismissed Prof Nutt for “crossing a line” into politics.
BBC home affairs editor Mark Easton said the absence of certain experts on the council meant it was “stymied” and effectively was now unable to operate under its current constitution.
[Read more at BBC News]