Thailand approves draft bill to relax its laws on cannabis medical testing

A draft bill composed by Thailand’s Narcotics Control Board may allow room for restricted cultivation for medical testing.

The board, responsible for drug strategies in Thailand, had its new draft bill reportedly approved by the Cabinet this week.

Currently, in Thailand, cannabis is a class 5 narcotic. Imprisonment of up to 15 years can be issued to anyone charged with possession or production of cannabis.

Government spokesman Sansern Kaewkamnerd praised the approval of the bill.

“The approval of this bill is an important matter, Class 5 narcotics were allowed for cultivation and extraction but not for consumption, which made it impossible to use them for research on humans.”

Since the early 2000s, Thailand led a notorious campaign to crackdown on methamphetamines. The campaign led to a full-fledged campaign against drugs including marijuana.

This was partly due to to the upsurge of methamphetamines. In 2003, then-Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra gave law enforcement officers the authority to act, pronouncing that there is nothing under the sun which the Thai police cannot do.”

Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra (Image via Asian Correspondent)

These actions saw approximately 2000 person dead, many of them were drug dealers. They were either killed in gun wars against law enforcement or by other gang members.