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How Russia used to be the world’s biggest hemp exporter
Why marijuana is still illegal in Russia and Ukraine
Russians, along with other Eastern Europeans such as Ukrainians, have a global reputation for being heavy drinkers. Russia is also known as the birthplace of a flesh-eating drug known as krokodil (“crocodile), or desomorphine, a synthetic opiate more powerful than heroin.
Given the prevalence of alcohol and opiates, it may be surprising that marijuana still remains taboo and illegal in Mother Russia.
Ukraine was poised to begin a medical marijuana program, but the process now appears to have hit a wall, with the newly elected president and former comedian Volodymyr Zelensky now suggesting the cannabis plant be studied further and implementation delayed.
Why marijuana is still illegal in Russia and Ukraine
Given the prevalence of alcohol in both Russia and Ukraine, marijuana is still taboo and very illegal in both countries. Here’s why.
Russians, along with other Eastern Europeans such as Ukrainians, have a global reputation for being heavy drinkers. Russia is also known as the birthplace of a flesh-eating drug known as krokodil (“crocodile), or desomorphine, a synthetic opiate more powerful than heroin. Given the prevalence of alcohol and opiates, it may be surprising that marijuana still remains taboo and illegal in Mother Russia.
A look at cannabis legislation in Countries around the World
Ever since Canada became the first major country to legalize marijuana for adults a year ago, other nations have been paying attention.
The small South American nation of Uruguay was the first to legalize marijuana for adults. New Zealand, Luxembourg and Mexico are among those that have looked to Canada for guidance or lessons, while Russia has chastised it for its “barefaced” flouting of international anti-drug treaties.
US student and medical marijuana patient charged with drug possession in Russia
Audrey Elizabeth Lorber, an American film student, is currently behind bars in Russia facing marijuana possession charges. Russian authorities allege Lorber illegally brought cannabis into the country after police discovered over 19 grams in her possession at the Pulkovo Airport. Based in New York, Lorber is a registered medical cannabis patient. But Russian courts say Lorber’s New York medical cannabis authorization doesn’t extend to Russia. Russia harshly penalizes drugs, and marijuana possession charges can carry a sentence of up to three years.
Russia advocates strict Drug Control Policy
Russia and few countries like Canada are at loggerheads over the issue of cannabis and hold conflicting views on drug related legislation. As per the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime’s (UNODC’s) World Drug Report 2019, Russia along with the US and China was one of the three countries that together accounted for 43% of injected drug use globally.
Russia has identified the drug and crime policy as an area challenging the existing Western-dominated order and has strongly advocated a hard-line approach that seeks to eliminate the illegal drug market. On the other hand, the US has softened its stance on drug policy since the last decade.
Tough cannabis policy has no effect on youth consumption rates: study
A new study has discovered that tough policies around drug use do not successfully deter youth from using cannabis, and that more liberal policies do not lead to an increase in rates of use.
Researchers at the University of Kent re-analysed information from over 100,000 teens in 38 countries such as Canada, the US, the UK, Russian and France.
Russia considering importing cannabis for research
Russia’s Health Ministry has expressed its interest in importing marijuana and hashish for research according to a draft bill that published earlier this week.
The purpose of the research would be to study marijuana’s “addiction-causing capacities”. Under current Russian law, the circulation of cannabis is illegal and possession of even small amounts can results in convictions or hefty fines.
“The import of narcotic drugs and cannabinoid psychotropic substances … will be required to conduct scientific research and testing in Russia,” says the regulation drafted by the Health Ministry.
Russia is known to be strongly against marijuana and have voiced their opinion on the matter when Canada decided to legalize cannabis nationally.
Schoolchildren in Russian Republic of Buryatia may face mandatory drug screenings
Similar proposals have been swiftly condemned in the past as violations of human rights.
If administrators in the Russian Republic of Buryatia get their way, students in the region may soon be required to take drug tests.
The move is similar to past proposals, many of which have been quickly condemned as human rights violations.
Schoolchildren Could Face Mandatory Drug Tests
As reported by Russia Today, the Republic of Buryatia is now considering implementing a new drug policy. And the way many people see it, the proposal could be a draconian and heavy handed attempt to vilify cannabis.
How to talk cannabis in seven different countries
Traveling to the Netherlands? Russia? This weed slang guide will make sure you’re never dry.
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