Home Ministry: UN reclassification on cannabis does not affect controls in country

PUTRAJAYA: The status of cannabis as a dangerous drug in Malaysia remains unchanged, despite the United Nations’ recent decision to reclassify the drug.

Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin (pic) said cannabis and cannabis-related items remain controlled under the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952 - an act that carries the death penalty.

“The Home Ministry would like to stress that the recent decision by the Convention on Narcotic Drugs does not affect the status of controls on cannabis in the country, ” said Hamzah in a statement on Friday (Dec 4).

On Wednesday (Dec 2), the UN agency voted to remove cannabis from a list that categorised it as one of the world’s most dangerous drugs.

The move follows the recommendation by the World Health Organisation (WHO) that research into its medical use is made easier.

Hamzah, however, said that reclassification did not mean that controls on cannabis were loosened at international level.

“Internationally, cannabis is still tightly controlled under Schedule 1 of the 1961 Convention.

“As a member of three UN conventions on drugs, which includes the 1961 Convention, the Convention on Psychotropic Substances of 1971, and the Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substance 1988, Malaysia remains committed to eradicating drug-related crimes both domestically and internationally, ” said Hamzah.

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