Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

High Times
0

News

Burmese Dissidents Broach Opium Decriminalization

As Burma’s opium wars continue despite the country’s democratic opening, activists are using the new political space to advocate for a more tolerant policy on poppy cultivation.

At a Feb. 16 panel in Rangoon, the Drug Policy Advocacy Group (DPAG) issued a call for a reform of Burma’s drug laws, The Irrawady newspaper reported.

“The 1993 Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Law focuses on punishment. But what then, after a drug user is given imprisonment?” asked DPAG coordinator Dr. Nang Pann Ei Kham. “The 1993 law is out of date, and what’s more, is that it has not been a successful law [in terms of] drug elimination.”

Under the 1993 act, a prison term of five to 10 years is imposed for any narcotics offense.

This, of course, has done nothing to slow Burma’s booming opium production. The country has, for decades, vied with Afghanistan for the dubious honor of the world’s top producer. It is currently in the second place slot, but rapidly catching up.

DPAG has been working to develop an advocacy platform for “non-punitive, evidence-based drug policy changes” in the country. The network was formed in 2014 under the name “Support, Don’t Punish,” to give voice to opium growers in the northern mountains who have been protesting government eradication campaigns.

Key recommendations raised by DPAG at the Rangoon meet included decriminalization of drug use and small-scale poppy cultivation by those with limited sources of livelihood.

The group also recommended voluntary treatment instead of punishment for drug addiction, and shifting the focus of enforcement to large-scale trafficking.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Advertisement

HT Newsletter

Subscribe for exclusive access to deals, free giveaways and more!

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Advertisement

You May Also Like

Culture

A mini-catalog of überaddicts, originally published in the November, 1982 issue of High Times.

News

The latest stats from the UN’s annual Afghanistan Opium Survey are in, and the news is grim. Opium production in the war-torn country jumped nearly...

Legalization

Anti-weed red-baiting? Retro!

Medical Marijuana

India is finally making strides in its efforts to normalize cannabis.

News

The Rohingya Muslim people of Burma are facing what some have called genocide in their homeland, long denied citizenship rights and now under attack by both...

Culture

In 2010, Elizabeth Mort was preparing to give birth. Before she went into labor, the Pennsylvania woman steeled herself by eating a poppy-seed bagel....

News

U.S. Marines this week returned to the Helmand province, now the epicenter both of Afghanistan’s Taliban insurgency and opium production. Ostensibly, the mission is to train...

News

MEXICO CITY (AP) — A Mexican army general said his forces are increasingly coming under fire from drug traffickers protecting opium poppy plantations in...

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!