Israel Cannabis Bill delayed by a week

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The Ministerial Committee on Legislation postponed for a week a bill that would decriminalize cannabis, due in part to a dispute between Likud and Blue and White.

The bill was initiated by Likud MK Sharren Haskel, who was appointed to work on cannabis legislation jointly with Blue and White MK Ram Shefa. But Haskel still hoped to advance the bill that she submitted before the partnership.

The head of the committee, Justice Minister Avi Nissenkorn, decided that more work needed to be done on the legislation before the bill would come to a vote. The social welfare and health ministries requested to have a say on the bill, as did the police. They asked for the bill to be postponed for at least a month.

But Nissenkorn recommended postponing it by a week, and his view passed in the committee.

Asked if she was angered by the postponement, Haskel said: “Yes, but I am trying not to [burn bridges.] Looking forward to next Sunday.”

The Likud and Blue and White also fought on Sunday over when the controversial Norwegian bill should be passed into law.

Blue and White faction chairman Eitan Ginzburg said the bill must come to a vote in the Knesset plenum on Monday or Wednesday.

But coalition chairman Miki Zohar (Likud) said it would not be brought to a vote this week.

The bill would allow ministers or deputy ministers to quit the Knesset and be replaced by the next candidates on the party’s list, but the ministers or deputies could come back to the Knesset if they quit their posts. Blue and White wants to pass the bill as soon as possible, because only three of its 15 MKs are not ministers.

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