(AFP) THE HAGUE —
Opponents of a Dutch cannabis law that restricts sales of the drug to
foreigners on Saturday launched a campaign aimed at getting citizens to
vote for pro-pot parties in elections next month.
said they would travel the nation in an old American school bus,
painted silver to convince people to vote for "cannabis friendly
parties" in the upcoming parliamentary polls.
campaign would be funded by 140 coffee shops and two wholesale
companies selling cannabis paraphernalia, one of the organisers Marc
Josemans told AFP from the southern Dutch city of Maastricht where the
campaign was launched on Saturday.
we started a 'cannabus campaign'," said Josemans, a Maastricht cannabis
cafe owner and campaigner against the new law.
aimed at trying to convince people to vote in a positive way on
September 12." The parties say they would abolish the law if they held
so-called "cannabis card" law came into effect on May 1 and effectively
transforms coffee shops into private clubs as it requires around 80
cannabis cafes in the south to sell only to signed-up members who live
in the country.
coverage widens nation-wide to 590 other coffee shops in January 2013,
and is aimed at curbing drug tourism-linked disturbances.
opposition parties -- including the current largest Labour Party
(PvdA), the Socialist Party (SP) and the Party for Animals (PvdD) have
said they were against the current law.
will do everything to get the 'cannabis-card' law off the table,"
Socialist Party MP Harry van Bommel said in a video interview published
on the Dutch pro-weed news sitewww.coffeeshopnieuws.nl,
adding "this law is part of the problem, not part of the solution."
PvdA in a statement on their website suggested that coffee shops simply
be replaced by "cannabis shops", with the sale of marijuana legalised
but strictly controlled.
cannabis is technically illegal in the Netherlands, the country in 1976
decriminalised possession of less than five grammes of the substance
under a so-called tolerance policy.