By Seun Adeuyi
The Mexican government is set to legalise marijuana for recreational and medicinal use as the Senate, on Thursday approved a bill aimed at reducing violence linked to drug trafficking.
The legislation still requires approval by the lower house of Congress, which has until December 15 to study and debate it.
AFP quoted the senate in a statement to have said, “Its objective is to promote peace and security in society, contributing to the reduction of the illegal market for psychoactive cannabis and with it, organised crime, corruption and violence.”
The bill was disapproved by 18 votes 82 in favour, and seven abstentions.
In 2015, a landmark Supreme Court ruling opened the door to the recreational use of marijuana in Mexico.
But it is still illegal to carry more than five grams (0.18 ounces), which would increase to 28 grams under the proposed law.
The law stipulates that anyone found to be carrying between 28 and 200 grams would be fined, and anyone with more than 200 grams could be criminally prosecuted.
The country is plagued by drug-related violence.
There have been around 296,000 murders, since the government militarised the fight against the powerful drug cartels in 2006.