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Authorities in Uruguay explain system of production and sale of marijuana

[JURIST] Authorities in Uruguay on Friday released details to explain how marijuana will be produced and legally sold in the country, following legislation [JURIST report] proposed by President Jose Mujica [official website, in Spanish]. Uruguay is the first country in the world [AP report] to have a system that regulates marijuana production, sale and consumption. The legislation, which is expected to come into force next week, allows households to grow 40 grams per month and and grow up to six cannabis plants. However, people are limited to only 10 grams of marijuana per week for purchase. It is expected [BBC report] to cost less than $1 per gram. The International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) [official website], the UN body overseeing the implementation of international drug treaties, has criticized Uruguay's legislation as being illegal [press release, PDF] under international treaties.

Lawmakers formally proposed the framework for the regulation of the production, sale and consumption of marijuana in 2012 in an attempt to reduce drug-related violence [JURIST reports]. Marijuana legalization [JURIST backgrounder] has created controversy around the world and in the US, and JURIST Guest Columnist Alex Kriet predicts that 2014 will be a groundbreaking year [JURIST op-ed] in marijuana policy. Last year Colorado voters approved [JURIST report] Proposition AA, which levies a tax on all sales of recreational marijuana in the state. Also last year the American Civil Liberties Union [advocacy website] filed a lawsuit [JURIST report] challenging Arizona medical marijuana regulation. Earlier that month Washington state approved [JURIST report] rules for recreational sale of marijuana. Also last year the US Department of Justice (DOJ) [official website] announced [JURIST report] that it would not interfere with states experimenting with marijuana legalization. New Jersey governor Chris Christie sent back a bill [JURIST report] which would have made marijuana more accessible. Earlier that month Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed [JURIST report] a bill making Illinois the twenty-first state to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes.

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