Planet Wrap: New Zealand, South Korea, Wales (UK),


Title: Extend medical cannabis decriminalisation to non-terminal patients and growers, Govt told

Author: NZ Herald

Date: 4 April 2018



The Labour-led Government is being urged to extend a legal defence for medical cannabis to non-terminal patients and people growing cannabis for pain relief.

As it stands, a law change before Parliament will ensure that patients with less than 12 months to live will not be prosecuted for having illicit cannabis.

Public hearings began on the bill today, and several submitters told the health committee that it did not go far enough.

New Zealand Drug Foundation executive director Ross Bell said the exemption should be extended to patients with “severe and debilitating conditions”.

“In reality, terminal patients aren’t getting arrested by police, but many other patients are.

“And the way that police are using their discretion means that a lot of people are getting prosecuted still.”

People providing or growing cannabis to patients, known as “Green Fairies”, should also be exempted, Bell said.

“I know that causes anxiety amongst politicians … but in the real world right now people are growing cannabis and using it for medical purposes and so we think the bill should make legal what is already happening.”

Parliament voted down a bill in January which would have allowed people with chronic conditions like epilepsy to legally use cannabis. The bill in Green MP Chloe Swarbrick’s name would also have allowed anyone with a prescription to use, possess and grow cannabis to treat a qualifying medical condition or nominate someone to grow cannabis for them.



Medical cannabis bill advances in South Korea


Title:  Cannabis is needed for medical treatment in South Korea, but legislation is slow to happen

Author: South China Morning Post

Date: 3 April 2018



A legislative change is essential to help patients and seems to be on its way. It doesn’t feel like it’s coming fast enough for Kim and other patients who need the cannabis products badly.

Kang’s group successfully lobbied 11 lawmakers who proposed a revision to the Narcotic Control Act. The bill was submitted in January and is expected to be reviewed by the welfare committee in April when the lawmakers will meet.

Lawmakers once turned down the revision in 2015, citing a lack of social consensus.

Kang said the mood has changed now. “When I talk to people, few disagree with legalising cannabis for healing people,” Kang said.



Title: Inside the pioneering Cardiff laboratory exploring whether cannabis can be used to treat cancer

Author: Wales Online

Date: April 2018



A laboratory in Cardiff is exploring whether certain chemicals in cannabis can be used to stop the spread of lung cancer. MediPen, based in Pontprennau , is conducting clinical trials to find out if particular “cannabinoids” – chemical compounds found in the weed plant – can help in the fight against the …


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