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A Year of ISMOKE Magazine – So what’s changed?


I decided to write this feature for the anniver- sary issue of ISMOKE Magazine, as I thought it would be good to assess what has changed in the UK in the last year or so, and then to briefly take a look back at previous issues of the mag.


So what changed for cannabis in 2011?


Te formation of the political party Cannabis Law Reform (CLEAR) and re-registration as a political party under the leadership of Peter Reynolds was a massive event that has since both united and divided the cannabis commu- nity.


It has raised awareness for the cannabis


campaign, and seen debates and taken steps towards a better future for cannabis in Britain. For full details on CLEAR, please go to www. clear-uk.org


introduce a Weed Pass to some areas this year, with Amsterdam falling last in January 2013. Tis is a very unwise decision for a country that makes billions from tourism as a result of its liberal views. I read somewhere that 1 in 4 tourists try cannabis when in Amsterdam, and 1 in 10 go there just to smoke weed! Tat is a lot of money that the Dutch Government will be missing out on.


November saw an article by the Daily Mail stating that Switzerland plan to allow 4 canna- bis plants to be grown per person in a house- hold to stop them buying drugs illegally. You can read the full article here – http://bit.ly/vTk3Yq .


Next came some amazing news that skyrock- eted ISMOKE’s views when I posted an article stating that the Basque region of Spain plans to regulate cannabis. Yes, you heard right:


Last year, Jim Pinky Starr was the talk of the town within the cannabis community, when he obtained a medical prescription for can- nabis in Holland, and wrote a letter to the home office stating that he was bringing back 2 month’s supply of his medicine. When Jim got back into the UK with his medicine and was not stopped, it prompted a multitude of questions to the Home Office as to whether this was allowed. Sadly this resulted in a state- ment from the Home Office that foreign na- tionals who had been prescribed cannabis in their own countries could take and use canna- bis in Britain, but British people that had been prescribed it abroad could not.


2011 was awash with rumours and articles on how the conservative Dutch Government were planning on tightening the laws surround- ing cannabis, both by considering high THC content on par with harder drugs, and then by plans to introduce a ‘Weed Pass’ to stop drugs tourism. Sadly there seems to be some truth in the latter rumour, and although the Coffee Shops will fight it with every ounce of strength that they can muster, the Dutch plan to


ISMOKE | 12


“Following news that Switzerland will per- mit its residents to grow 4 cannabis plants for personal consumption from January 1st 2012, Te Basque Parliament in Spain has followed suit. A new law bill will officially regulate the cultivation, sale and consumption of cannabis in the Basque region from 2012. Te Basque Region of Spain will regulate cannabis mar- kets in 2012” (pr cannazine).


Tis news came at an excellent time, and as Te Netherlands becomes stricter on canna- bis tourism hopefully the Basque region will become a new area where people can go and smoke cannabis in peace.


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