War on Drugs

Laws Criminalizing Drug Possession Can Cause More Harm

In many countries, a criminal record, even for a minor offense can have serious implications. Being convicted of a criminal offence renders one ineligible for certain jobs, social grants or benefits or from even being able to exercise one’s right to vote. It can also severely limit the ability to travel to certain countries and can result in the loss of custody of minor children. As prison conditions are often poor and health care services limited, a custodial sentence can have implications on the health outcomes of individuals.

Deep Discord at United Nations over Global Drug Policy

International drug conventions ultimately aim to ensure the health and welfare of humankind, UN Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson said here Tuesday at the opening of a special three-day session on drugs known as UNGASS.

Bolivia Charts Its Own Path on Coca

This week, the U.N. reported that coca cultivation in Bolivia fell nine percent last year, and a massive 26 percent in the past three years.

Let Colombia End Its Civil War

After half a century, Colombia may put an end to its conflict—if the U.S. will allow it.

Next Step in Uruguay: Competitive, Quality Marijuana

Uruguay, about to become the first country in the world where the state will fully regulate production, sale and distribution of marijuana, will spend the next few months selecting a good quality strain of the crop that can be sold at a price similar to current illegal prices.

More U.N. States Quietly Say No to Drug War

An internal United Nations draft document leaked last weekend has offered outsiders a rare look at longstanding disagreements between member states over the course of U.N. drug policy.

U.S. Vows Support for Colombia Peace Talks

Despite looming differences over Colombia's drug policy, President Barack Obama renewed his support for a peaceful settlement to the civil war that has plagued the country for over half a century in a meeting with Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos Tuesday.

Revised U.S. Stance on Marijuana Will Be Felt Beyond Borders

The U.S. Justice Department on Thursday issued surprise guidance directing its attorneys not to sue states that have moved to decriminalise the recreational use of marijuana, so long as those states implement strict regulatory regimes.

Q&A: “Did 100,000 People Have to Die, or Disappear?”

The violent drug war in Mexico's borderlands has changed the face of the country, injecting fear into both average citizens and the journalists trying to tell their stories.

OAS Chief Calls for “Long-Awaited” Debate on Drug Policy

Following the release of a major draft report on drug policy in the Americas, the secretary-general of the Organisation of American States (OAS), Jose Miguel Insulza, called for the beginning of debate aimed at reforming those policies throughout the region.

Drug Dealers Trade Crime for Peace in Rio de Janeiro

Tuchinha was once a drug lord in Rio de Janeiro’s Mangueira favela. But today he is helping youngsters in this Brazilian city turn their lives around and leave behind crime, prison and the likelihood of an early death.

In U.S.-Mexico Relations, a Shift from Security to Economy

Ahead of President Barack Obama’s trip to Mexico and Costa Rica, experts here are expecting that security will take a back seat to issues of economic cooperation between the U.S. and Mexico.

Libya Fights Increased Drug Trafficking

In Libya, a dose of LSD or the painkiller tramadol costs 78 cents, and a joint of cannabis is 7.80 dollars. Here, drugs are affordable to the poor for a simple reason. “Slashing prices is a way to create demand and open up a market,” a Western diplomat tells IPS in Tripoli, the capital.

Task Force Urges Joint U.S.-Mexico Approach to Border

A group of business executives, civil society leaders, policy experts and former government officials from Mexico and the United States are recommending that the two countries expand cooperative law-enforcement efforts along the border.

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Mexican Victims Get Law That “Should Not Have to Exist”

"We will not stop fighting until there is justice for our children," says Araceli Rodríguez, the mother of a young federal police agent in Mexico who disappeared along with seven other people in the western state of Michoacán on Nov. 16, 2009.

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