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Colombian President Signs Decree Legalizing And Regulating Medical Marijuana

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Joining America’s 23 states that have legalized medicinal cannabis for the benefit of its citizens, Colombia’s President Juan Manuel Santos put pen to paper on Tuesday, signing a decree that legalized the cultivation and distribution of marijuana for medical purposes.

According to Yahoo News:

“Santos announced it would be fully legal to grow, process, import and export cannabis and its derivatives for medical and scientific use.”

Representing an important shift in Columbia’s war on drugs, which has long sided with America’s misguided policy aimed at extinguishing the cultivation of illegal narcotics, Pres. Santos noted during the signing ceremony that his new decree “represents a major step that puts Colombia at the vanguard and forefront of the fight against illnesses.”

Despite the fact that Colombia’s citizens have been allowed to possess minute amounts of any narcotic for personal use for several years, Columbia’s medical marijuana program has lingered in a legislative purgatory – with no tangible regulations. But now, thanks to the new presidential decree, citizens of Columbia can apply for a cultivation license.

With this announcement Columbia will be joining a rather interesting club south of the U.S. border. Uniting with countries like Uruguay, Chile and Mexico, which have recently rolled out new policies that embrace marijuana reform. Columbia’s newest presidential decree represents a surge of changing attitudes towards marijuana consumption and its potential medicinal benefits for those in Latin America.

(Photo Courtesy of the BBC)

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