Under the leadership of previous United Nation’s Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s regime, member states which legalized or even considered legalizing cannabis were called out and admonished for violating decades-old international drug treaties. Under the current leadership of Sec-Gen António Manuel de Oliveira Guterres, who was instrumental in decriminalizing all drugs in his native Portugal when he was Prime Minister, his regime is adopting more progressive views about cannabis. Despite this, the UN World Health Organization remains ambivalent on the subject.
The 40th World Health Organization (WHO) Expert Committee on Drug Dependence (ECDD) met from June 4-7 in a specially convened session to evaluate the public health harms and therapeutic value of cannabis and its related substances.
According to a WHO news release, it was the first time the WHO ECDD reviewed cannabis and cannabis-related substances to consider the appropriateness of their current scheduling within the 1961 and 1971 International Drug Control Conventions. Substances under control are regulated by the International Drug Control Conventions, which restrict international production and trade of these substances. Cannabis and cannabis resin is currently placed under the strictest level of international control alongside substances like fentanyl analogs and heroin.
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