Just say maybe: Is the world ready to abandon the war on drugs?
“The question is whether the UN is ready to soften its stance or whether it will plough on despite mountains of evidence suggesting its zero-tolerance approach has failed.”
On the face of it, the UN meeting looks set to be a damp squib, with the three existing UN Drug Conventions unlikely to be superseded by a more liberal text…Yet some think the open revolt that’s set to happen at the meeting will be a turning point. “Countries are going to get more confident in their right to do what they think is best for their citizens,” says Amanda Feilding of the Beckley Foundation, a pro-reform NGO based in Oxford, UK. So what are the options for the reformers? In the short-term they can express dissenting statements from the meeting’s official report. Longer-term, they can try to negotiate exemptions, like Bolivia did when it left the conventions and returned only in 2013 when it got an amendment allowing its people to chew coca leaves. Another option is for countries to negotiate breakaway treaties. Even if countries choose to deviate from the conventions without official permission, it is unlikely there will be consequences. Realistically all the UN can do is issue disapproving reports; sanctions tend to be reserved for rogue nuclear states.
Original Article (New Scientist):
Just say maybe. Is the world ready to abandon the war on drugs?
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