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Cannabis And Narcotics For Medicinal Use In Mexico

Author:Mr Alejandro Luna, Alejandro Torres and Ingrid Ortiz
Profession:OLIVARES
 
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Cannabis and Narcotics for Medicinal use still have an uncertain status in Mexico. Regarding the medicinal use of cannabis there is still debate since the Mexican General Health Law still contains a provision that forbids activities and conducts in Mexico related with cannabis or its derivatives; with respect with other narcotics, there is also a prohibition within our Health Law. However, there are some precedents introducing the medicinal use of cannabis, and for other narcotics there are some approvals granted with our current legislation which have been in force for many years now.

The prohibition stablished in the Health Law mainly forbids plantation, cultivation, harvesting, elaboration, preparation, conditioning, acquisition, possession, trade, transportation in any form, prescription, supply, employment, use, consumption and, in general, any act related with narcotics or any products that contains them. The Health Law specifically prohibits prepared opium, for smoking, diacetylmorphine or heroin, its salts and preparations, cannabis sativa, indica and american or marijuana or opium poppy papaver somniferum, papaver bactreatum and erythroxilon novogratense or cocaine, in any form, derivatives or preparations. Additionally the Health Law stablishes a list of narcotics which approval is under the discretion of the Ministry of Health until they can be replaced in its therapeutic uses by other elements that, in their opinion, do not create dependency.

At the end of 2015, Mexican Supreme Court of Justice debated whether "recreational" use of cannabis should be authorized by the Federal Commission for Protection against Sanitary Risk (COFEPRIS) the Mexican Health Regulatory Agency.

Four members of a Mexican non-governmental organization (NGO) contested the refusal of a petition filed before COFEPRIS to plant, cultivate, prepare, possess and transport cannabis for "recreational" use. They argued in part that the basis of the refusal and the corresponding provisions of the Health Law violated the civil right to express one's personality and the rights of autonomy related to the human dignity that are recognized by the Mexican Constitution.

The District Court in charge of reviewing this Constitutional Action at the first stage dismissed the arguments. The NGO appealed, and due to the importance of the case, the appeal was taken up by the Mexican Supreme Court.

In brief, the Supreme Court Justices who decided the case declared certain articles of the...

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