Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla has added her voice to the growing chorus of Latin American leaders calling for an end to Prohibition in the wake of violence, crime, and corruption sweeping the hemisphere.
“Drug legalization in Central America merits a “serious” debate as a solution to the crime and violence coursing through the region even if it runs up against U.S. opposition, said Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla.
“If we keep doing what we have been when the results today are worse than 10 years ago, we’ll never get anywhere and could wind up like Mexico or Colombia,” Chinchilla said yesterday in an interview in San Jose.
President Chinchilla joins Guatemalan President Otto Perez Molina, and Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, both of whom have called in recent months for legalization as a way to thwart the massive power and influence of the drug cartels. President Molina has pledged to try to win support from other Latin American leaders for the plan.
Former Mexican President Vincente Fox, whose nation has seen 50,000 killed in five years of Prohibition War, has been an advocate for the end of Prohibition since 2009, and last year, the Global Commission on Drug Policy, chaired by former President of Brazil Fernando Henrique Cardoso called on the United States to legalize marijuana as a first step towards protecting democracy in the hemisphere. Other members of the Global Commission include former US Secretary of State George Schultz, George Papandreou, the Prime Minister of Greece, former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, Ruth Dreifuss the former President of Switzerland, former Chairman of the Federal Reserve Paul Volcker, and businessman Richard Branson, among other luminaries.
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