Councils can ban tourists from coffee shops, Council of State rules

Dutch News (Netherlands)
Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Local councils in the Netherlands do have the power to ban people who do not live in their area from visiting cannabis cafes, the Council of State ruled. Preventing drugs tourism and combating organised crime are legitimate aims to allow selection on the basis of nationality, the country's highest legal body said. 'The residence criterion is a proportionate measure for combating drugs tourism and this legitimate objective cannot be achieved by other, less radical means,’ the council said in a statement. The ruling marks the latest in a long legal battle between the Dutch government and cannabis cafe owners in Maastricht and Limburg. There the local councils have closed cafes, known as coffee shops, for selling marijuana to tourists. (See also: Most Dutch councils ignore ban on marijuana sales to tourists)