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Mexico & USA review drug legalization

Mexicans were divided on Monday over the recent proposal by former President Vicente Fox to legalize drugs, while the U.S. government considered that it is not the answer to the problem.

Fox wrote Sunday on his internet blog that “we must think about legalizing the production, distribution and sale of drugs”, this was the most far-reaching proposal to date on the subject by a high profile authority in a country where more than 28,000 people have died in the current government’s fight against the illegal drug business.

The majority agrees that the U.S. position weighs heavily in the debate in Mexico, a subject that President Felipe Calderon touched last week by saying that “although you do not agree with legalization, does not preclude a national debate on it” .

The U.S. State Department said Monday that “the question about a debate on the legalization of drugs is something that Mexicans must decide.”

But a department spokeswoman, who requested anonymity because he was not authorized to give his name, said Monday that the official position is that “we do not believe that legalization is the answer.”

The Citizen Council for Public Safety and Criminal Justice, A. C. expressed a similar view: “The proposal of ”legalization” of drugs to eradicate violence in the country is wrong because it is based on a profound misunderstanding of the problem in Mexico and avoids the main cause, which is none other than the loss of monopoly of force by the state. ”

The civil partnership was referring to drug cartels that have reached beyond drugs to carry out kidnappings and extortion, and use grenades and grenade launchers to face police and soldiers.

Others point out that the proposal stems from current events in the U.S., where California voters will decide in November on Proposition 19, a law that would allow adults to carry up to 28 grams (one ounce) of marijuana, and local governments will be able to impose taxes on its sale.

In an interview with a radio station over the weekend, Felipe Calderon said: “It may be true” with respect to the potential blow to the finances of the drug cartels. However, the president warned that “complete free market in drugs, and a price reduction, are two factors that will encourage millions of young people to use drugs. Now, even if the supposed benefits are real, if there isn’t a generalized policy, worldwide, specially in the main drug consumer, USA, then there will not be any real economical benefits as the price is determined by the US market”, he added.