German opposition leader backs EU’s Nix Country cannabis proposal
A leader of Germany’s main opposition party on Wednesday took aim at the country’s proposal to decriminalize marijuana, urging the European Union to step in and block the plan.
Klaus Holetschek, health minister of a conservative-led state government in Germany, “met with the EU Director-General for Migration and Home Affairs in Brussels on Wednesday to call for an EU veto,” according to the Associated Press.
The proposal was made by German Health Minister Karl Lauterbach late last month. If implemented, the new law would “decriminalize possession of up to 30 grams (about 1 ounce) of cannabis and allow the substance to be sold to adults for recreational purposes in a controlled market,” the Associated Press reported.
As German broadcaster Deutsche Welle reported in June, “legalizing and regulating the cannabis market was one of the progressive reforms promised by Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s government in his time [Social Democratic Party of Germany] signed a coalition agreement with the neoliberal Free Democrats (FDP) and the Greens last year.”
Lauterbach, a member of the Social Democratic Party, said in June that he had “always been opposed to the legalization of cannabis” but that he revised his “position about a year ago”.
He expressed “his desire to present a new cannabis law to the German Bundestag in the second half of the year,” Deutsche Welle reported at the time.
Those plans fell through in September, however, when the coalition government of the Social Democrats (SDP), Greens and FDP expressed concern that the proposal they were preparing could not be approved by European Union courts.
“Certain caution about promises of a breakthrough before the end of the year,” said a German government official at the time. “The complexity of it all is starting to decrease and there is a sharper awareness of the risks involved. We don’t want another motorway toll debacle,” a reference to a plan to build a toll road that was abandoned when the European Court of Justice ruled it violated anti-discrimination law because it would disproportionately affect foreign motorists.”
After presenting his decriminalization proposal last month, Lauterbach said the federal government would “consider with the European Union Executive Committee whether the plan approved by the federal government is compatible with EU laws, and only then proceed with legislation “on that basis.” it gets the green light,” the Associated Press reported at the time.
Under the proposal, according to the AP, cannabis “could be grown under license and sold to licensed adult outlets to combat the black market,” while individuals “could grow up to three plants and purchase or own 20 to 30 grams of marijuana.”
Holetschek criticized the coalition government’s proposal on Wednesday and called on the European Union to block the measure.
According to the Associated Press, “Holetschek said he told EU official Monique Pariat that ‘the federal government’s proposed legalization of cannabis is not only dangerous to health, but I believe it violates European law,'” and he “claimed so.” two EU agreements oblige Germany and other member states to criminalize the manufacture and sale of drugs such as cannabis.”
Although marijuana is decriminalized in a number of European countries, full legalization across the continent is still fairly rare.
Last year, the tiny state of Malta became the first country in the European Union to legalize cannabis. The new law allows individuals to own up to seven grams and grow up to four plants in their home.