24 Oct 14
Montenegro Says No to Marijuana as Medicine
Montenegrin ministers have refused to back an initiative to legalize marijuana for medical purposes, saying any such decision requires further medical and legal analysis.
Ministers on Thursday decided against supporting a proposed amendment to the law on the prevention of drug abuse, which would have allowed for the medical use of marijuana in certain circumstances.
The bill put forward by the Liberal Party, a partner in Milo Djukanovic’s coalition government, argued that marijuana had proven positive effects in the treatment of a number of conditions.
Supporters of legal use of the plant say its benign effects have been tested in the treatment of multiple sclerosis and Aids. It is also believed to ease the painful side-effects of chemotherapy.
However, the cabinet said more legal and scientific work needed to be done before the government could give the controversial proposal a green light.
“The use of drugs based on marijuana for therapeutic purposes requires broader amendments to the existing legislative framework in consultation with experts,” it said.
Health Minister Miodrag Radunovic said in September that was he open to the idea of allowing people to use cannabis for medical purposes.
Radunovic said he would support a legal solution that would enable to use marijuana for the reduction of pain.
Legalization of cannabis for medical purposes has been raised in other countries in the region in recent months, such as Croatia and Serbia, but with no results so far.
Some individual American states and European countries – such as The Netherlands – now allow patients access to cannabis on a doctor’s prescription.
Source: Balkan Insight (Montenegro)