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Bolivia withdraws from UN Single Convention

Posted on July 7th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

AndesThe government of Bolivia formally notified the UN Secretary General of its withdrawal from the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs on June 30. The withdrawal will enter into effect on Jan. 1, 2012. At that time, Bolivia will re-accede to the Convention with a reservation on the coca leaf and its traditional uses. Bolivia's step—the first of its kind in the history of the UN drug control treaties—comes after the rejection earlier this year of its proposal to delete the Single Convention's Article 49 obligation that "coca leaf chewing must be abolished." A number of countries, including the United States, objected.

Bolivia: coca chew-in for legalization

Posted on February 6th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

coca leafOn Jan. 26, coca growers and their supporters gathered in cities across Bolivia to hold peaceful demonstrations in support of their government's proposed amendment to the 1961 UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs. The amendment seeks to decriminalize the traditional practice of coca leaf chewing. Coca growers' federations from the Chapare region gathered in Cochabamba's main plaza to collectively chew coca, distribute information, offer free samples of coca leaves, and show their solidarity with the Bolivian government's legalization proposal. (Andean Information Network, Jan. 26)

Colombia's president warns against Prop 19

Posted on October 26th, 2010 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

ColombiaColombia’s President Juan Manuel Santos warned Oct 25 that approval of California's Proposition 19 could force nations worldwide to rethink their anti-drug policies. He also said legalized cannabis in California would make the fight against drug cartels tougher throughout Latin America. "Tell me if there is a way to explain to a Colombian peasant that if he produces marijuana we are going to put him in jail and that the same product is legal [in California]," Santos said during a radio interview. "That's going to produce a comprehensive discussion on the approach we have taken on the fight against drug trafficking." (AHN, Oct. 25)

Venezuela seeks extradition of Colombian kingpin

Posted on August 21st, 2010 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

ColombiaVenezuela and the US are both seeking the extradition of Walid Makled, a notorious drug lord known as "The Arab" or "The Turk," who was arrested in a joint operation by Colombian police and the DEA in the city of Cúcuta near the Venezuelan border Aug. 19. A federal court in Manhattan has indicted Makled on charges of drug trafficking—allegedly in cooperation with Colombia's FARC guerillas. Venezuela is meanwhile seeking him on multiple murder counts.

Peru: authorities challenge UN findings on coca leaf boom

Posted on June 25th, 2010 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

AndesPeru is set to overtake Colombia as the world's top coca producer, the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) said in its World Drug Report 2010 released this week. The agency cited a 6.8% increase in areas of Peru under coca cultivation in 2009 compared with 2008—despite an overall 5% decrease from 167,000 hectares in 2008 to 158,000 hectares in 2009 across the Andean region generally.

Move over Coca-Cola: here comes Bolivia

Posted on May 20th, 2010 by Nikolas Kozloff and tagged , , , , .

Dancing coca leaves at closing rally of the The Andean nation's indigenous people have long resented the U.S. beverage company for usurping the name of their sacred coca leaf. Now, they are aiming to take back their heritage. Recently, the government of Evo Morales announced that it would support a plan to produce a coca-based soft drink which would rival its fizzy American counterpart.

Colombia to go Green in May 30 presidential race?

Posted on May 17th, 2010 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

ColombiaColombia's presidential election on May 30 is developing into an unexpectedly tight race between Juan Manuel Santos—incumbent hardliner Alvaro Uribe's former defense minister who pledges to continue the current aggressive military campaign against drugs and guerillas—and Antanas Mockus, reformist, anti-corruption candidate of the Green Party (Partido Verde). In February, President Uribe was constitutionally barred from running for a third term, leaving Santos as his heir-apparent and presumed shoe-in. But polls are showing Mockus' potential as an upset victor.

Colombia: indigenous communities targeted in war

Posted on May 17th, 2010 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , .

ColombiaIndigenous communities in Colombia's southwestern department of Cauca issued a statement May 11 calling upon all armed fighters to leave their territory, following the intensification of clashes between FARC guerillas and the army that left many civilians injured, displaced, or dead. "We have been left alone in the midst of the bullets of legal and illegal armed groups," said Miller Correa, indigenous governor of the indigenous community of Tacueyó, Toribío municipality.

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