Colombia’s President Legalizes Medical Marijuana

Colombia's President Juan Manuel Santos is legalizing the cultivation and sale of marijuana for medical and scientific purposes.

Santos says the decree issued Tuesday puts Colombia at the vanguard of a new approach to reducing the harmful health effects of drug use.

Colombia joins countries from Mexico to Chile that have experimented with legalization or decriminalization as part of a wave of changing attitudes toward drug use and policies to combat it in Latin America.

Colombia has long been identified with U.S.-backed policies to eradicate narcotics production and a sharp decline in levels of violence over the past 15 years is largely attributed to the no-tolerance policing.

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