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Новости/Аналитика

The fundamental differences in the reasons for legalizing the use of the therapeutic properties of cannabis in different regions of the world

03.01.2019

The main reason for the adoption of a regulatory framework that allows the use of the therapeutic properties of cannabis for medical purposes in Thailand is the influence of US policy in Southeast Asia.
 
For the first time in South-East Asia at the end of December 2018, Thai lawmakers unanimously approved the use of cannabis for medical purposes.
 
Thai history of cannabis
 
Thailand has a rich medical, agricultural, and culinary history of hemp. Before the ban in the twentieth century, hemp was used in many ways as one of the main ingredients of Thai cuisine. Leaves and inflorescences were actively used in Thai cooking, in the dried state cannabis was present in the kitchen in the form of spices, spices, teas, etc. Homemade hemp fibers were widely used as the basis for the manufacture of textiles and knitwear, footwear, accessories, etc. For medical purposes, hemp in Thailand has been used for more than 4 thousand years. The healing properties of cannabisa in all of Asia for thousands of years have been used to treat digestive problems, to ease pain, as well as fatigue, to heal a number of other diseases.
 
Cannabis in Thailand actively developed until 1934, when the country adopted the law “On Marijuana”. The situation deteriorated sharply in 1979, when Thailand adopted a new version of the “Law on Drugs”. As part of the legislation adopted in the 1970s, hemp was forbidden to use any form. Anyone who was exposed in production, processing, sales, export, import cannabisa in accordance with the 1979 law was subject to criminal prosecution for a period of 2 to 15 years and fined $ 40 thousand.
 
A shift towards easing state policy in the field of hemp industry has been observed in the country over the past few years. In 2016, Thailand’s Minister of Justice, Paiboon Koomchaya, called on the government to decriminalize cannabis crimes. In addition, the question of the need to create a regulatory framework governing the legal use of the therapeutic properties of the plant was already raised. Mr. Kumchaya called for changes in the country's legislation due to the fact that strict laws could not curb drug crime, and consumers cannabisa were subjected to exorbitant cruel punishments. In other words, the war with hemp turned out to be much more expensive than the possible negative effect attributed to the plant.
 
The influence of the United States on the decision to legalize the possibility of using the therapeutic properties of hemp
 
The vast majority of Thai citizens, as well as residents of other Asian countries, for the most part do not approve of legalizing the use of psychoactive cannabis for recreational purposes. Similar views of Asian people are related to the influence of the US information policy in the region. For most of the twentieth century, the United States actively imposed on the residents of the region the stigma that any use of psychoactive cannabis is associated with organized criminal groups - Mexican cartels, Japanese yakudza or Chinese triads. For decades, US policy in this region was primarily aimed at restricting drug trafficking. As a result of this kind of information policy for several generations, the citizens of Asian countries are rooted in a negative attitude to the possibility of using cannabis for recreational purposes.
 
The United States has a long history of fighting drugs in Thailand, influencing drug policy and supporting various anti-drug initiatives of the country's government. Lobbying for American interests in the region is also carried out through the staff of the Office for Combating Drug Control (DEA, USA), which has its own representation in the country. In Thailand, a situation has actually developed in which the decision of the country's government to legalize the possibility of using cannabisa for medical purposes was not made due to strong public pressure (as noted in Europe, the United States or Canada) on the relevant government structures. Changes in the attitude of the Thai government to the use of cannabis for medical purposes are a reflection of the changing US policy towards cannabis both domestically and internationally. The main reason for the adoption of a regulatory framework that allows the use of the therapeutic properties of cannabis for medical purposes in Thailand is the influence of US policy in South-East Asia.
 
Commentary of the «Ukrainian Industrial Hemp Association»
 
In early 2018, another conservative East Asian country legalized the use of cannabis for medical purposes, as well as various kinds of products containing cannabidiol. In Malaysia, where drug-related offenses caused the largest number of executions, a moratorium on the death penalty for cannabis-related crimes has now been introduced. Moreover, the medicinal value of the therapeutic properties of cannabisa is being studied at the government level.
 
The changing attitudes of state institutions to the possibility of using cannabisa in Thailand and South Korea reflect the growing awareness that the use of the therapeutic properties of cannabis is about health issues, not about criminal justice issues. Despite the fact that both countries adhere to a tough position regarding the possibility of using cannabis for recreational purposes, legalizing the right to use cannabisa for medical purposes helps to change the history of cannabis in both these Asian countries and in the entire Asia-Pacific region.
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