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  • AIDS in Russia: Immune to reason

    Russia’s contempt for effective drug and HIV policies is killing its citizens
    The Economist (UK)
    Saturday, October 1, 2016

    russia-heroin-usersThe Soviet Union began reporting HIV in 1987, and the virus took off in Russia in the early 2000s, mostly among intravenous (IV) drug users. Dirty needles remain the primary means of infection. But with more new transmissions through heterosexual sex, doctors warn that HIV may threaten the general population. Bad policies and neglect have fed the epidemic. Russia has eschewed the kind of sex-education and drug policies that have been shown to work elsewhere. Harsh anti-drug laws keep users in the shadows. Methadone and other forms of non-injected opioid substitution therapy (OST) are illegal.

  • NCB destroys 62 acres of cannabis crop, 'innocent' villagers seek compensation

    Farmers were not amused at seeing the crop go up in smoke, and have demanded compensation
    Times of India (India)
    Tuesday, September 27, 2016

    Wild cannabis in UttarakhandIn an indication of the extent of illegal cultivation of marijuana in the hills of Uttarakhand, sleuths from the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) have destroyed a massive 62 acres of the plant in just three days. The bureau is going to extend their crackdown to other districts in the hill state. While no one has been booked for growing the narcotic plant, villagers are not amused at the crackdown and have launched furious protests against the bureau, the local administration and the government, demanding compensation for their "loss". (See also: Proposal legalising hemp cultivation sent to U’khand govt)

  • Congress calls out DEA for unilateral move to expand the war on drugs

    Members of Congress are urging the federal government to delay a decision to ban the herbal supplement kratom
    The Huffington Post (US)
    Monday, September 26, 2016

    kratomA bipartisan group of House lawmakers are asking the Drug Enforcement Administration to reconsider its decision to place the herbal supplement kratom into Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act. In a letter, 45 representatives ― including 17 Republicans ― called on acting DEA Administrator Chuck Rosenberg to delay the impending ban in order to “engage consumers, researchers, and other stakeholders, in keeping with well-established protocol for such matters.” (See also: The DEA is about to make life even more dangerous for heroin users)

  • Marijuana arrests fall to lowest level since 1996

    By contrast, the numbers show police have been making more arrests for cocaine and heroin, and for other non-narcotic drugs
    The Washington Post (US)
    Monday, September 26, 2016

    us-marijuana-arrest-2015Arrests for simple marijuana possession in the United States fell to nearly a two-decade low last year, according to new statistics released Monday by the FBI. The number of arrests for marijuana possession in 2015 – 574,641 – is the lowest number since 1996. It represents a 7 percent year-over-year drop, and a 25 percent drop from the peak of close to 800,000 marijuana possession arrests in 2007. In 2010, for instance, marijuana sales and possession together accounted for 52 percent of all drug arrests. By 2015, that number had fallen to 43 percent. Still, the marijuana possession arrest rate works out to more than one arrest every minute.

  • American says he wants to protect Jamaica’s natural ganja

    As soon as the Jamaica Government opens up the new industry a lot of new varieties (of ganja) are coming in
    Jamaica Observer (Jamaica)
    Sunday, September 25, 2016

    Anticipating that original ganja strains are likely to become extinct after the new, legitimate ganja industry opens up in Jamaica, American businessman Mark Santiago has committed to taking equipment into the island to ensure that the original genetics of the weed are preserved. Santiago, who invests heavily in the ganja sector in America, is now waiting to get the greenlight from the Cannabis Licensing Authority to kick off his business here in Jamaica with his local partner, Courtney Laing.

  • The Netherlands comes a step closer to legalised marijuana cultivation

    A large percentage of the population and local councils support the measure as well
    Dutch News (Netherlands)
    Friday, September 23, 2016

    marijuana-plantA majority of MPs now seem likely to back draft legislation from the Liberal democratic party D66 which would regulate legalised marijuana cultivation under government control. The bill envisages coffee shop owners buying their produce from licenced growers who produce the marijuana in a closed system. Producers will have to meet certain conditions and be checked by officials. Even though there is a general election next March, D66 is optimistic the bill can be passed by the lower house of parliament before then. However, the government remains opposed to the idea. (See also: Dutch parliament supports proposal for regulated cannabis cultivation)

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