A Divided Country Readies for Mexico's 2016 Domestic Drug Policy Debate
Mimi Yagoub - InSight Crime
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December 7, 2015

Mexico opening the door to legalization of marijuana (Cronkite News)

Mexico's President Enrique Peña Nieto has reiterated his disapproval of legalizing marijuana in the country, setting the tables for a debate that could set a key precedent in drug policies throughout Latin America.

"I have clearly and categorically expressed my personal position on several occasions: I am not in favor of consumption or legalization of marijuana," the president affirmed during the inauguration of a new child welfare program on December 2, reported Proceso.

Peña Nieto's comments came the same day that Mexico's Interior Minister, Miguel Angel Osorio Chong, announced marijuana laws will be reviewed in a three-pronged debate beginning in January 2016. This will include forums with experts, academics, and the public, and the analysis of similar experiences in other countries.

In his remarks, Peña Nieto maintained that legalization would not help in the fight against drug trafficking, and questioned whether fighting crime was worth putting children's health at risk. The president used a personal anecdote to enforce his point, describing how his children approached him and his wife asking, "does that mean I can light up a joint in front of you soon?"

Peña Nieto added that he was nevertheless in favor of a debate exploring the possible uses of marijuana, including for medical purposes.

Mexico's next steps regarding marijuana legalization could reverberate throughout the Americas.

Read the rest at InSight Crime

Related: Two Perspectives on Future Marijuana Legalization in Mexico (Frontera NorteSur)

Related: Mexican Weed Legalization Could Benefit US (The Arizona Daily Wildcat)

Related: A Small Step for Mexico, a Big Step for Drug Policy (World Policy)

Related: Is Smoking Weed a Human Right? Why the Mexican Supreme Court Thinks the Answer Is Yes (The Atlantic)

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