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Where do Ireland’s political parties stand on decriminalising cannabis?

THERE HAS BEEN much talk in recent times about cannabis, namely plans to decriminalise or legalise it in certain jurisdictions.

A number of states in the US have decriminalised or legalised the drug and more are considering it.

In Colorado, for example, adults aged 21 or older can legally possess one ounce (28 grammes) of marijuana. Last year the state sold $996 million worth (about €876 million) of recreational and medical cannabis.

Under decriminalisation, the manufacture and sale of the drug remains unregulated but those caught using it face civil fines instead of criminal charges.

Legalisation lifts the laws banning the possession and personal use of cannabis. It also allows the government to regulate and tax sales.

In November, Drugs Minister Aodhán Ó Ríordáin said he backed the decriminalisation of possession of small amounts of drugs when speaking at the London School of Economics.

“I am in favour of a decriminalisation model, but it must...

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