Mar 4, 2012

Drug Policy: Biden Travels To Latin America Amid Drug Decriminalization Debate

Fox News: "Vice President Joe Biden heads to Latin America Sunday amid unprecedented pressure from political and business leaders to talk about something U.S. officials have no interest in debating: decriminalizing drugs. Presidents of Costa Rica, Guatemala, El Salvador, Colombia and Mexico, all grappling with the extremely violent fallout of a failing drug war, have said in recent weeks they'd like to open up the discussion of legalizing drugs.

..."It's a different moment when you have actual heads of state talking about the need for a thorough debate on this," said John Walsh, a drug policy expert at the Washington Office on Latin America .... "It's certainly different for sitting presidents to be uttering those words. You wouldn't have thought it possible just a few years ago."

... Retired Brazilian judge Maria Lucia Karam, in an email to The Associated Press, ... said that ... Latin American leaders (have) been worn down by the drug war's relentless toll. "The public comments we are seeing are a sign of deep frustration and anger that is now prevalent in Latin America due to the U.S. and U.N.'s seeming unwillingness to engage in a serious debate about implementing effective drug policies that respect human rights and truly protect health," she said." read more

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