Berlin Set to Relax Cannabis Laws

A new marijuana policy could make it legal for individuals to posses up to 15 grams (0.5 ounces) of the drug in the German capital. The regulation would make Berlin among the most cannabis-friendly in Europe.

Berliners have long enjoyed their city’s soft stance on marijuana. It’s not uncommon to see someone taking a deep drag on a joint in a city park or rolling one in the back of a café.

Now, though, the German capital may take a further step toward becoming one of the most weed-tolerant in Europe. The city-state’s top health official told SPIEGEL that she plans to raise the amount of marijuana and hashish one can possess to 15 grams (0.5 ounces).
German federal law prohibits the possession of marijuana beyond a “small amount” but leaves it up to the states to determine exactly what that amount should be. Most states, including Brandenburg, which surrounds Berlin, define a “small amount” as 6 grams. Until now, Berlin has allowed the possession of 10 grams.

With the regulation set to expire, Katrin Lompscher, the city’s top health administrator, is soon to sign a new regulation increasing the amount. She says the success of the 10-gram rule warrants an increase, though her office, despite repeated requests, have declined to characterize that success.

Not everyone in Berlin is pleased with the plan. Lompscher’s far-left Left Party is the junior coalition partner in the Berlin city-state, paired with the center-left Social Democrats (SPD). The Left Party has long advocated a legalization of cannabis, but Stephanie Winde, a spokeswoman for the Berlin SPD, told SPIEGEL ONLINE that the Left Party hadn’t discussed the 15-gram policy before going public. The SPD, she says, would prefer to be part of a joint decision on cannabis policy.

Easier for Dealers?

If Lompsher’s new measure goes into law, it would also seemingly stand in contradiction to stepped-up efforts to combat drug-dealing in Berlin over the past year. In one instance, dozens of police officers, supported by a helicopter, combed Hasenheide, a 50-hectare (125-acre) park in central Berlin, for 13 hours in search of dealers. Other parks have likewise been targeted.
Some have wondered aloud whether Lompsher’s proposal will just make it easier for drug dealers to carry their goods and be covered by the law. “Dealers will exploit the liberal regulation and carry no more than the legal amount,” the Berliner Zeitung newspaper wrote in a recent editorial.

A European Leader

If the proposed measure goes into effect, Berlin’s marijuana laws would be among the most liberal in Europe. In the Netherlands, individuals are allowed to possess just 5 grams for personal use without fearing prosecution. In Belgium, it is 3 grams. The Czech Republic recently passed the most liberal drug laws in Europe, allowing individuals to grow up to five cannabis plants or be in possession of as many as 20 marijuana “cigarettes.”

– Article from Der Spiegel on .

Comments

5 Comments

  1. Anonymous on

    @Muk just moved to Berlin is there any coffe-shops around berlin litchefeild area i can get some??

  2. Muk on

    The truth is….

    I live in Germany
    its not legal to posses any amount of weed in Berlin.
    If u get couht with weed they will take it away from u in any case.
    When u get couht the first time with less then 15g the police takes your weed and u have to pay a fine(depends on your income and amount of weed).
    Second time couht u have to go to cort.

    This Law is not new its a few years old and will run out soon,
    thats why the debatte is going on.

    Sorry for my bad English

    Greetings
    Muk

  3. mFuk on

    Portugal has personal limit for grass at 25 grams it has been since 2001, still ilegal to have seed or grow or even to buy and sell but least I don’t have to worrie about the smoke in my pocket, its less for hash but nowadays the green is better than the hash, Spain and Italy also have personal limits too, more and more EU countrys are now decriminalising pot use, this combined with all the various US medical shops makes me think maybe… just maybe… we will all see big changes in pot laws around the world & hopefully this will effect Marcs situation, I sure hope so. Great news for Berlin and great news for the rest of us too.

  4. ray christl rasta vibe euro-love on

    and words are action on many levels.When the increasing anecdotal evidence of H.E.R.O.rick simpson machine/remedy for cancer and other acute illness the new deductive studies should reflect the efficacy of this ancient modality.Then “system two” thought can allow complete cannabis usage…Millions of acres!!!Organic cinder blocks to build a tower to the moon.?

  5. Mrs.Rat'sRectum on

    It’s a joint. There’s no need to refer to a “marijuana cigarette.” Everyone knows what a joint is!