In a newly-released report, the International Narcotics Control Board is expressing their concerns with PM Justin Trudeau’s plan to legalize recreational marijuana, stating that “it will be placing Canada in violation of international drug control agreements” that the country has signed.
As of right now, anything other then scientific or medical use is a violation. “As the board has stated repeatedly if passed into law, provisions of Bill C-45, which permit the non-medical and non-scientific use of cannabis, would be incompatible with the obligations assumed by Canada under the 1961 Convention as amended,” the report said.
United Nations Conventions
Canada has signed three United Nations conventions which prohibit the use of marijuana. Even though the Trudeau government has been given many, many warnings, they have still not responded as to how they are going to stay in compliance. The lack of plan or response from the government could jeopardise the chance for Canada to get a seat on the UN Security Council.
NDP, MP Matthew Dube has said “We should have done our homework in advance. This is not something new. It is a commitment that Mr. Trudeau took before the 2015 campaign.” Although so far, no plans have been released as to how this situation should be handled.
The government could request to reclassify marijuana as a lower class of drug, but this is not something that would be completed by the time the recreational cannabis law goes into effect in July.
A spokesperson for Foreign Affairs minister Chrystia Freeland said that they have been consulting experts on “how to handle the international conventions”, but did not give any real information. “We are committed to working with our global partners to better promote public health and the fight against illicit drug trafficking.”
If nothing is done before July, the UN could require that the other countries who have signed the international drug control conventions, stop legal prescription drug trades with Canada, as they govern that as well.
It also leaves Canada open to being sued by any of the countries who are a part of the convention, in the International Court of Justice.