Mexico plans to legalize marijuana for medicinal and recreational purposes. The Mexican Senate on Thursday (19/11) approved a draft bill aimed at reducing violence related to drug trafficking transactions.
About 82 votes expressed support for the draft bill, 18 opposed it, and seven abstained.
Currently, the draft bill is still waiting for approval from the lower house of Congress, the Chamber of Deputies to be studied and debated until 15 December.
In a statement, the Senate said that the legality of marijuana aims to promote peace and security.
“The aim is to promote peace and security in society, contributing to the reduction of the illegal market for psychoactive cannabis, organized crime, corruption and violence,” the Senate wrote as quoted by AFP.
A 2015 Supreme Court ruling opened the door to recreational use of marijuana in Mexico.
Even so, marijuana is still illegal if more than five grams are owned. This legality allows a person to own up to 28 grams of cannabis and to grow up to six stalks at home for personal consumption.
Anyone found in possession of marijuana weighing between 28 and 200 grams will be fined. Meanwhile, marijuana owners weighing more than 200 grams will be prosecuted criminally.
As part of a cannabis legality campaign, pro-legalization cannabis activists planted cannabis gardens right outside the Senate grounds.
Apart from Mexico, other Latin American countries including Peru and Ecuador sell marijuana legally by pressing the maximum purchase limit per person such as 3, 8, 10, and 15 grams.