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Uruguay marijuana move 'illegal': UN body

VIENNA -- Uruguay's move to legalize the production and sale of marijuana breaks international law, the world drugs body said Wednesday, warning it would encourage addiction.

“Uruguay is breaking the international conventions on drug control with the cannabis legislation approved by its congress,” said the International Narcotics Control Board, a U.N. body that oversees the implementation of international treaties on drugs.

INCB president Raymond Yans added he was “surprised” that Montevideo had “knowingly decided to break the universally agreed and internationally endorsed legal provisions of the treaty.”

He accused the country's lawmakers of ignoring scientific evidence on the health risks of marijuana, and said claims the law would help reduce crime relied on “rather precarious and unsubstantiated assumptions.”

The move “will not protect young people, but rather have the perverse effect of encouraging early experimentation, lowering the age of first use, and thus contributing to ... earlier onset of addiction and other disorders,” said Yans.

Uruguay's parliament voted on Tuesday to legalize marijuana, becoming the first nation in the world to oversee the production and sale of the drug.

“The war against drugs has failed,” said Senator Roberto Conde as he presented the bill on behalf of the ruling leftist Broad Front, calling it an “unavoidable response” to that failure.

The law not only authorizes the production, distribution and sale of cannabis, but also allows individuals to grow their own on a small scale, and creates consumer clubs — all under state supervision and control.

The U.N. office on drugs and crime on Wednesday said it agreed with the INCB statement and implicitly criticized Uruguay's unilateral move in the global war on drugs.

“Just as illicit drugs are everyone's shared responsibility, there is a need for each country to work closely together and to jointly agree on the way forward for dealing with this global challenge,” it said in a statement.

December 13, 2013    kingsolomon@
Why don't the U.N. include banning SMOKING and DRINKING (alcoholic drinks) so this world will be safer and healthier. Why single out marijuana? Does smoking and drinking have any health benefits or does it have health and other issues just like marijuana? Something smells very, very fishy here.
December 16, 2013    curtisakbar@
Well done Montevideo, weed is less harmful than tobacco and alcohol. That Raymond Yans seems to be an old fuddy-duddy that just selectively picks his research to confirm his viewpoint. Other nations in the world have decriminalized or in certain areas made cannabis legal, so why all the fuss?

I wish more countries would make it legal, I would prefer to run into a bunch of stoners on a dark night than a bunch of drunks.
December 20, 2013    cloggedwithguts@
This UN body is clearly biased towards Uruguay...why don't they condemn the use of tobacco and alcohol? This Raymond Yans character should do more research on marijuana before opening his redneck potty mouth, I seriously think that he should those rednecks in Southern Taiwan.
January 6, 2014    CRISERICSON@
WE DON'T WANT ONE WORLD GOVERNMENT. IT IS TIME TO CLOSE DOWN THE UNITED NATIONS IN ORDER TO STOP THIS CANCEROUS ATTACK AGAINST INDIVIDUALITY. EACH COUNTRY MUST DETERMINE ITS OWN COURSE. CLOSE DOWN THE UNITED NATIONS! END ONE WORLD GOVERNMENT! END FACIST TOTALITARIAN DICTATORSHIP OF ONE WORLD GOVERNMENT - CLOSE THE U.N. !!!!!
WE HAVE INTERNET NOW, PEOPLE ALL AROUND THE WORLD CAN TALK TO EACH OTHER.
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