108 Members of the European Parliament (MEP) have signed a draft resolution calling for an end to drug prohibition. Representing about one sixth of the Parliament’s members, MEPs from seven political parties and 13 European Union countries have agreed to urge the UN and its member states to establish a “system for the legal control and regulation of the production, sale and consumption of substances which are currently illegal.”
The resolution is a sweeping condemnation of the UN anti-drug treaties and conventions, calling them “a genuine failure” and “the actual cause of the increasing damage” related to the illegal drug trade.
The effort is lead by a coalition of MEPs including Marco Cappato of the Italian Radical Party. “This is a resolution we will bring before the European Parliament,” Cappato told Cannabis Culture. “We will use it to bring pressure on European governments to make them raise their voices on reforming the UN convention.”
“We are not attempting global drug legalization through the UN,” said Cappato. “Reforming the UN conventions is not the end of the process, but a means of allowing countries to try new models. The nations of the world need to raise their voices and say ‘we no longer accept that we have to follow a failed model.'”
“This is only a step, but it is an important step,” concluded Cappato. “These are representatives of the EU speaking, This will put pressure on European governments so that one or more of them will start raising doubts in Vienna, start breaking the prohibitionist consensus. We tried to do something like this four years ago and we had 60 MEPs. Now we have 108 MEPs. Our numbers are growing.”
? Transnational Radical Party: email [email protected]; web www.radicalparty.org
? European NGO Council on Drugs and Development: www.encod.org
? This is an edited version of an article which originally appeared on the Drug Reform Coalition Network: www.drcnet.org.