Thailand Wants to Become the First Asian Country to Legalize Medical Marijuana

After Canada legalized recreational marijuana, many wondered what country would follow in their footsteps in legalization. And the answer may be Thailand.

The Thai government will review a bill to legalize medical marijuana within the next month. Jet Sirathraanon, chairman of Thailand's National Legislative Assembly’s standing committee of public health, says the country needs to legalize soon to avoid falling behind other countries in the international cannabis market. 

Thailand actually has a long history with marijuana. The drug has been used as an herbal medicine for centuries, and the country actually grew tons of marijuana just a few decades ago. In fact, some say Thailand produces the best cannabis in the world, with one DEA agent in the 1960's referring to it as the "Cuban cigars" of marijuana.

But Thailand outlawed the drug in 1979 along with many other countries as part of international anti-drug treaties. But while other Asian countries have instituted harsh punishments for cannabis, Thailand's remained fairly lenient and it now appears they'll be heading towards legalization.

That certainly makes more sense than telling your citizens they can't smoke weed even in legal countries like Canada, which both Japan and South Korea have done.

(h/t Quartz)

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