Politics Outside US

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Drug turf war advances into 'safest city in Mexico'

Location: 
San Pedro Garza Garcia
Mexico
Publication/Source: 
The Kansas City Star
URL: 
http://www.kansascity.com/mld/kansascity/news/world/16695933.htm

First Pictures from Coca Land

Mana coca foods (and other foods) store owner of Mana, with coca energy powder changing of the guard, Municipal Palace, Plaza de Armas, Lima cocalero leader Nelson Palomino, with coca leaves Drug War Chronicle editor Phil Smith with Nelson Palomino National Cathedral, Plaza de Armas Phil Smith with Peruvian academic and coca expert Baldomero Caceres upscale Lima suburb Miraflores pedestrian shopping street Jiron de la Union, Lima Municipal Palace National Cathedral
Location: 
Lima
Peru

Mexico wants to partially decriminalize drugs

Location: 
Mexico City
Mexico
Publication/Source: 
ABC News
URL: 
http://abcnews.go.com/Health/wireStory?id=2871242

Off to Ayacucho and the Valleys of the Apurimac and Ene Rivers

Oh, my situation is fluid. I was supposed to travel to Ayacucho today to visit cocalero leader Nelson Palomino and check out what is going on in the coca fields of the Valles de los rios Apurimac y Ene (VRAE), one of the most conflictive coca zones in the country. But last night, I got word that Palomino and his crew had come to Lima for meetings. I managed to hook up with them this morning, as well as visiting Mana Integral, a small company devoted to the nutrional uses of coca. It makes coca wheat, coca yoghurt, coca energy packets (they would look great at your local convenience store). And now, although Palomino is headed up to San Martin in the northeast for more meetings, one of his men is going to accompany me on an overnight bus ride, getting into Ayacucho at dawn, then another ride of four or five hours into the heart of the VRAE. It´ll be up and over the Andes and down into the selva at the edge of the Amazon basin. Should be very, very interesting in the VRAE. It takes so long to get there that we will stay there tomorrow night and return to Ayacucho Thursday afternoon. This has some implications for near-term blogging and for getting the Chronicle out in a timely manner this week. I don´t think I´m going to find high speed internet access in the VRAE, so you may not hear from me for a day or two. I also had very interesting and disturbing conversations with coca experts Baldomero Caceres and Ricardo Soberon yesterday. Look for some of that in one of the articles I do for the Chronicle this week. This working from the road in the Third World is really kind of a hassle. I have to rely on internet cafes, and often the people working them don´t have a clue about why my connection won´t work. Then, if I have to use their machines, I have problems with the strange keyboards. But I do my best.
Location: 
Lima
Peru

With Baldomero Caceres in Miraflores

I´ve spent the last few hours with Baldomeo Caceres, the Peruvian psychologist and coca expert, walking around central Lima and talking about the politics of coca. Now, we´ve traveled to Baldo´s house in the upscale Lima suburb of Miraflores, where we´re going to have a nice Peruvian lunch, then I´ll pull out my laptop and do a formal interview with him. One of the points that Baldo hammered away on while we walked and talked was his frustration with the slow pace of efforts to get coca removed from the list of banned plants in the 1961 UN Single Convention on Narcotics. Evo Morales is supposedly ready to formally request coca´s removal from the list, but according to Baldo, he isn´t getting support from some of the quarters he should be in the world of the non-governmental organizations. We´ll see what Baldo is willing to say about that on the record. He was also pessimistic about the prospects for change at the UN General Assembly special session on drugs in Vienna next year. Again, we´ll see what he says about that on the record. I have just been called to lunch, so I will keep this short. After this, I go to interview Peruvian defense and drug policy analyst Ricardo Soberon, formerly an advisor to Congresswoman Nancy Obregon. I will have photos soon. I had to buy a cable for the camera so I can transfer the photos. I´ll try to post some this evening.
Location: 
Lima
Peru

Op-Ed: The USA and Mexico: Distinct Theatres in One War

Location: 
Mexico
Publication/Source: 
Mexidata (CA)
URL: 
http://www.mexidata.info/id1252.html

Illegal Drugs Soar in Panama

Location: 
Panama
Publication/Source: 
Prensa Latina (Cuba)
URL: 
http://www.plenglish.com/article.asp?ID=%7B130E9D9B-3BFB-41B9-A13E-0BB0264A6BBB%7D)&language=EN

Dutch secretary of health advocates removal of recreational drugs from anti-doping code

Location: 
Netherlands
Publication/Source: 
International Herald Tribune (France)
URL: 
http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/02/12/sports/EU-SPT-Netherlands-Anti-Doping-Code.php

Press Release: Israeli and European doctors called Cannabis "a medicine" and asked to expand the list of indications and to expedite commercial growing for patients

News Release Israel's Ministry of Health Medical Cannabis Conference Israeli and European doctors called Cannabis "a medicine" and asked to expand the list of indications and to expedite commercial growing for patients. January 21, 2007 Tel Aviv, Israel By: Boaz Wachtel Israeli Ministry of Health (MOH) organized January 17th, 2007 the first Medical Cannabis Conference ever held in Israel. The landmark conference, designed to educate doctors and patients about the pros and cons of Medical Cannabis, was held at Abarbanel governmental hospital in Bat-Yam. Opening remarks were made by Dr. Yehuda Baruch, Deputy Director of the Ministry of Health responsible for authorization of medical Cannabis to patients. He said "I view Cannabis as medicine, like any other medicine…It is not always clear how it works…Almost no one studies the subject since it can not be patented and be financially profitable. But we do rely on existing research and especially on patient's feelings". Another speaker at the conference was the world's leading Cannabis researcher Professor Rafael Mechoulam from Hebrew University in Jerusalem who presented advances in Cannabinoid research and recent findings. Dr. Itay Gur Arye – the secretary of the Israeli Pain society and Director of the Pain Treatment Center at Sheba government hospital spoke of the failure of existing medications to provide adequate pain relief and pointed to the good efficacy of Medical Cannabis in the treatment of naturopathic pain. He also called for the establishment of a government regulated Cannabis growing and distribution operation for patients who hold doctor's prescription or recommendation. Dr. Peter Van Kanten, a family Doctor from Holland, reviewed the many indications cannabis is used by patients in Holland. Dr. Van Kanten spoke of the positive experiences patients have while using MC and about the Dutch National Medical Cannabis program that allows patients (who possess Doctors' prescription) to buy Medical Grade Cannabis through Pharmacies. Few patients who use Medical Cannabis spoke: An HIV, Cancer and Tourrette syndrome patients. They talked about reduction of symptoms while using Cannabis after trying existing medications that failed to provide relief. They talked about improvement of appetite, weight gain and a sense of well being that allowed them to function. Dr. Gideon Hirsch – the Director of the Israeli AIDS Committee presented research supporting the use of Medical Cannabis among HIV patients and of the need and importance to allow HIV patients to use medical Cannabis before the on set of a full blown AIDS. Mr. Boaz Wachtel, a medical Cannabis activist spoke about various medical cannabis programs around the world and the wide spread illegal use of Medical Cannabis in many societies. He viewed Historical use of Cannabis in Israel dated 1600 years ago and about Israeli Ministry of Health procedures for patients. Last but not least was Mr. Haim Messing the Director of Israeli the Anti-Drug Authority who spoke about the dangers associated with cannabis use and while supporting the use of synthetic Cannabis was against Cannabis smoking as a means of delivery. For further details: Boaz Wachtel wachtel@shani.net Tel: ++972-544573679
Location: 
Tel Aviv
Israel

Rice: Karzai's opium fight insufficient

Location: 
Washington, DC
United States
Publication/Source: 
UPI
URL: 
http://www.upi.com/InternationalIntelligence/view.php?StoryID=20070209-064953-8951r

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