As the Trump administration reinvigorates the US war on drugs, Mexican leaders are increasingly looking at other ways to reduce gang-related violence south of the border – including legalization.
Former Mexican President Vicente Fox proposedlegalizing the farming of opium poppies as a strategy to curtail profits for the drug cartels and reduce violence, while tourism minister Enrique de la Madrid said Mexican states should move toward legalizing marijuana to match similar measures in the US, Reuters reported.
Outgoing President Enrique Pena Nieto has said Mexico and the United States should not pursue diverging policies on marijuana, the agency noted. Fox, who was president from 2000-2006, has also advocated for the legalization of that drug in the past.
Drug policy is a major campaign issue in Mexico’spresidential election, with the front-runner, leftist Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, suggesting an amnesty program for gang members to break the cycle of violence.