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Uruguay votes to legalize marijuana in effort to combat drug traffickers

On Tuesday, lawmakers in Uruguay voted to institute a law that legalizes and regulates marijuana as part of an experiment to combat drug traffickers.

By
JC Finley
Uruguay voted on December 11, 2013 to legalize marijuana as part of an experiment to combat drug traffickers. (CC/United States Government/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)
Uruguay voted on December 11, 2013 to legalize marijuana as part of an experiment to combat drug traffickers. (CC/United States Government/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

Dec. 11 (UPI) -- Lawmakers in Uruguay voted yesterday to legalize and regulate marijuana in an effort to combat drug traffickers.

The small South American country had invested personnel and money fighting its war on drugs, and views the legalization of marijuana as an experiment. Senator Luis Rosadilla of the ruling Broad Front party voted in favor of the measure, noting "Uruguay has taken a step forward... We'll see how it works, and we'll continue looking for solutions."

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Under the new law, which awaits President Jose Mujica's signature, there will be a 120-day period in which the government can adopt and implement regulations.

As it is currently written, the law permits individuals to grow up to six marijuana plants and possess up to 480 grams for personal use. Marijuana clubs with between 15 and 45 members may grow up to 99 plants at a time. Users must register, including those whose use is medically-prescribed. Licensed pharmacies will also be able to sell marijuana.

[Washington Post] [CNN]

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