Colombia’s government proposed legislation that would allow the legal cultivation and use of coca, cannabis and poppy for limited purposes.
Current antinarcotics legislation bans the cultivation and use of the coca and poppy disregarding their purpose.
The cultivation and export of cannabis for medicinal use had already been regulated by former President Ivan Duque.
In an interview with newspaper El Espectador, Justice Minister Nestor Osuna stressed that the bill was no first step towards the possible decriminalization of cocaine, a drug made with coca leaves.
Instead, the proposed legislation seeks to allow the legal cultivation of illicit crops for scientific research, medical purposes and the development of new products, like “for example, fertilizers, plastics or paint on a coca leave basis,” said Osuna.
The bill specifically seeks to benefit farmers who are currently cultivating poppy, coca and marihuana in violation of antinarcotics legislation.
These farmers will have the options to cultivate illicit crops for legal purposes and substitute them or face forced eradication and possible prison sentences.
The legislation includes a differentiated approach for indigenous communities that have consumed coca for centuries.
Source : Colombia Reports