A collection of government committees—including the Israeli police, the Public Security Ministry, and the Health Ministry—are set to endorse the continuation of cannabis decriminalization in Israel that will eventually lead to recreational legalization.
Initially, the State of Israel Ministry of Health was against full-force legalization and only found the plant suitable for medicinal purposes. However, with talk of Israel becoming a major exporter of cannabis, the government is changing its stance on the issue.
Back in June, two bills passed preliminary readings that would allow for personal possession of 15 grams cannabis, legal sale from those with a license, and decriminalization for up to 50 grams. Still, home marijuana grows would remain illegal.
According to polls, Israel is very much in favor of legalization. In 2017, about 27 percent of Israelis have consumed cannabis within the last year—a large jump from the 8.8 percent report in 2009.
One of the biggest concerns is how the Israeli government would handle the recreational market. According to reports for medicinal marijuana patients, there are only so many dispensaries legally licensed to carry cannabis, making it extremely difficult for these individuals to get their medicine.
In a joint statement by Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud, Prime Minister, and Benny Gantz, Defense Minister, it was claimed that they’d, “[advance legalization] to resolve the issue of decriminalization and legalization.” This was followed up by discussions of reform for the medical cannabis industry that would make it easier for patients to gain access to this plant.
The statement was supported by Amir Ohana, Public Security Minister. His ministry claims, “The stance of the incoming public security minister is… to minimize harm as much as possible to [otherwise] law-abiding citizens who have offenses linked to the drug.”
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