Skip to main content

Israel Cabinet Approves Medical Marijuana Guidelines

Submitted by Phillip Smith on (Issue #696)
Drug War Issues
Politics & Advocacy

The Israeli cabinet Sunday gave its approval to medical marijuana guidelines that will govern the supply of marijuana for medical and research purposes. In so doing, it explicitly agreed that marijuana does indeed have medical uses.

(image courtesy
"The cabinet today approved arrangements and supervision regarding the supply of cannabis for medical and research uses," said a statement from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's spokesman. "This is in recognition that the medical use of cannabis is necessary in certain cases. The Health Ministry will -- in coordination with the Israel Police and the Israel Anti-Drug Authority -- oversee the foregoing and will also be responsible for supplies from imports and local cultivation."

The cabinet move comes on the heels of the Health Ministry's decision last week to deal with supply problems by setting up a unit within the department to grow medical marijuana. That unit will begin operating in January 2012.

The Health Ministry also decided that the country's medical marijuana supply should be domestically produced. Israeli police had lobbied for medical marijuana to be imported instead, in a bid to reduce diversion.

Israel currently has about 6,000 medical marijuana patients, but the program is so popular that there are estimates that number could rise to 40,000 by 2016. Medical marijuana for existing patients is currently provided by private Israeli growers.

Permission to Reprint: This content is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Content of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.


Anonymous1 (not verified)

For all of Netanyahu's talk of 'free markets', he has yet to learn the lesson that Professor Milton Friedman (who was amongst Reagan's economic advisors who called for total legalization) and Dr. Ron Paul (who is a physician, as is his son) have tried to teach...creating government monopolies through overregulation and/or through prohibition increases crime.

I advise that the Israeli government allow for private cultivation of the herbal remedy cannabis, as that will keep prices low for the patients, and reduce cost for the Israeli government and taxpayers, and will reduce crime and is the only way to guarantee quality control -- through free markets in what is the safest, most benign herbal remedy known to mankind.

The 150,000 Israelis currently in the streets protesting against Netanyahu's authoritarian policies should call for total legalization.  Netanyahu should legalize the herbal remedy cannabis, or be kicked out of office.

Mon, 08/08/2011 - 3:31am Permalink
Fairuse (not verified)

Is Isreal a signatory to the US backed UN anti-drug(cannabis) charter? I wonder if the US will try to bully them like we tried with Canada and Mexico.
Mon, 08/08/2011 - 10:25pm Permalink
Kevin Logan (not verified)

In reply to by Fairuse (not verified)

In light of Israel publicly announcing Cannabis as having legitimate medicinal values, I would suspect the US would at least cut off the flow of free money it gives to Israel for becoming smokers of the devil's weed. One would have to ask themselves this question; Will the U.S. now deploy it's troops from Iraq into Israel to liberate them from this evil plant or will they just fire off a nuke at them? Time will tell.

Sat, 09/03/2011 - 5:39pm Permalink
william graves (not verified)

I hope this is true. If Israel succeeds in this then watch out for the US of A. I also hope that the US in seeing this will approve on the FDA level the medical use for MJ and it in doing so will be LEGAL!! ANd then legal for recreational use as well. FAR SAFER THAN ALCOHOL!!!! PERIOD!!

Wed, 08/10/2011 - 4:43pm Permalink
Prince Charles (not verified)

Congratulations to the State of Israel for recognizing the beneficial medical qualities of Cannabis.  DEA Federal Admin Law Judge, after an intensive 2 year study ruled in his Findings of Fact that medical cannabis was one of the safest medicines one could use, and that it's therapeutic value  extremely beneficial for various ailments, and that without doubt should be re-scheduled  so as to allow any licensed Physician to prescribe it.  Ex Drug Czar Barry McKaffrey even said that the cannabis plant had over 300 beneficial compounds, and over 62 anti-cancer fighting cannabinoids.  Maybe now the Federal Government of the United States will stop the insanity of arresting patients for utilizing what licensed Physicians sometime recommend their patients to use to help ease their suffering from certain ailments.

Thu, 08/11/2011 - 10:24am Permalink
Phil DeBoll (not verified)

I'm very pleased to see that the Israeli government acknowledges the truth , that Cannabis IS a very beneficial plant and that it will be a very positive thing for Humanity to discover it's full potential, Sad that the American government has become such a backward Nation,trapped in it's Reefer madness mentality the U.S  continues to lead the world in incarcerating it's Citizens rather than being the Leader in Cannabis Research.

Sun, 08/14/2011 - 1:02am Permalink
FreePalestine1948 (not verified)

Now if Israel would only have the same medical concern for the Palestinians. Oh wait they don't! They let pregnant mothers and babies die at military checkpoints.

Sun, 08/14/2011 - 10:37am Permalink
"The One as Pr… (not verified)

In reply to by FreePalestine1948 (not verified)

Hamas and DEA are both thuggish anti-semites in ski-masks that burn bonfires of patients' homepathic herbal medicine.  

Hamas supports prohibition of pot AND alcohol.

Israel would decriminalize pot for Palestinians, but a majority of Gazans were hypnotically programmed by the morons in the U.S. government to vote in Hamas, because the U.S. gov't wants Palestinians to support prohibition.

Get your facts straight.  Barq Hussein Obama pledged 1 BILLION to Hamas after Gazan voted in Hamas, because Obama is anti-marijuana.  Hamas fires rockets at Israeli kindergartens and schoolbuses, because the DEA finances HAMAS.  


Know that the U.S. agents are the common enemy of all Muslim warriors, Jewish warriors, Christian warriors worldwide.  

Sat, 08/20/2011 - 7:13pm Permalink
Free Palestine… (not verified)

Perhaps they would realize intentionally murdering Israelis is bad for the cause of Palestinian Nationalism. Also to the person who says that Israel needs to offer it at low prices, most dispensaries are non profits that give it to patients for free.
Mon, 08/15/2011 - 10:49am Permalink

Does everyone know and understand that the US Government has Patent # 6,630,507 on …. Drum rolls please… CANNABINOIDS!
Thinking to myself when I first noticed this …surely this is just a pile of crap. How could the Federal Government on one hand call cannabis a schedule I (one) narcotic…
“(1) Schedule I.—
(A) The drug or other substance has a high potential for abuse.
(B) The drug or other substance has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.
(C) There is a lack of accepted safety for use of the drug or other substance under medical supervision." [20]
No prescriptions may be written for Schedule I substances.”. And on the other hand, hold a patent to CANNABINOIDS?

Tue, 08/16/2011 - 11:52am Permalink

this is great news. we hope that the US government (all states, that is) approves of this as soon as possible. I don't get why they keep on closing their minds in regards to this issue. 

Thu, 08/18/2011 - 7:30am Permalink

Add new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.