As the world learns more about about the scientific properties of cannabis, more countries are passing legislation that favors decriminalization or full legalization of marijuana each year, and 2017 was no exception. To recap which countries took major steps to decriminalize cannabis in some way, here is every country that legalized marijuana in 2017.
In October of 2017, the Congress of Peru passed a bill to legalize medical marijuana with a high level of support. The measure allows patients with chronic or terminal illnesses to use medical marijuana products.
2, Republic of Georgia
In November of 2017, the Constitutional Court for the Republic of Georgia decriminalized marijuana use, saying it is unconstitutional to prosecute people for using cannabis. This ruling follows the decision to decriminalize cannabis cultivation (of up to nearly a half pound) earlier this year, and may pave the way for full-fledged marijuana legalization.
In July of 2017, the parliament of Catalonia (the autonomous region in the south of Spain) voted to legalize the cultivation, consumption, and distribution of cannabis. Adults who want to use marijuana must become a member of one of the region's designated cannabis clubs.
In June of 2017, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto signed a measure for legalizing medical marijuana and classifying the psychoactive compound in the herb as “therapeutic.” It calls on the Mexican Ministry of Health to regulate “the medicinal use of pharmacological derivatives of cannabis” and develop a research program for studying the herb's effects to help craft broader policies.
In June of 2017, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and Health Minister Andreas Xanthos of Greece announced a big change to the country's stance on cannabis: the legalization of medical marijuana.
In May of 2017, Chile became the first Latin American country to allow pharmacies to start selling cannabis-based products. Until then, Chilean patients could only get their medical marijuana products from either one of a few non-profit cannabis farms in the country or importing them from elsewhere.
In January of 2017, German parliamentarians voted unanimously to legalize the use of marijuana for medical purposes, and the "cannabis as medicine" law went into effect in March.