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  1. Online activists take on police in Christiania

    01 August 2013
    Other news

    In response to the increased police presence in and around Christiania, a number of citizens are fighting back online. Fans of Christiania have long been using a Facebook page, 'Politi razzia på Christiania?' (PRPC), to inform one another of police presence in the freetown. The page has well over 9,000 likes and also been developed into an app for smartphones that allows people to check for police presence before heading to Christiania. The page was created in response to Taskforce Pusher Street.

  2. Report illustrates dynamics of Colombia's domestic drug trade

    25 February 2015
    Other news

    A recent analysis on the relationship between local drug markets and violence and crime in Colombia illustrates the dynamics driving the domestic drug trade, and provides recommendations for comprehensive government interventions designed to result in long-lasting security improvements.

  3. human-rights-day

    Human rights and drug control: an irreconcilable contradiction?

    Ernestien Jensema
    15 October 2013
    Other news

    This week both the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) in Vienna and the UN General Assembly 3rd Committee in New York discuss new drug control resolutions related to upcoming reviews of global drug policy. The high-level CND review in March 2014 and the Special Session of the General Assembly (UNGASS) on drugs in 2016 provide opportunities to change course and to ensure drug policy fully respects human rights.

  4. Is the war on drugs nearing an end?

    07 April 2013
    Other news

    For four decades, libertarians, civil rights activists and drug treatment experts have stood outside of the political mainstream in arguing that the war on drugs was sending too many people to prison, wasting too much money, wrenching apart too many families -- and all for little or no public benefit. They were always in the minority. But a sign of a new reality emerged: for the first time in four decades of polling, the Pew Research Center found that more than half of Americans support legalizing marijuana.

  5. Whither Rio de Janeiro’s Police Pacification Units?

    18 November 2013
    Other news

    Rio de Janeiro’s Pacification Police Units (UPP) are celebrating their fifth year in 2013. They do so with generally positive approval ratings from the media and society as a whole. A recent study by Instituto Data Favela indicates that 75% of favelas inhabitants approve of the UPPs. Notwithstanding major crises and criticism, the UPP constitute the single most important public security initiative in the state. And yet the persistent informality of the UPP may eventually undermine its sustainability. (See also: Rio slum pacification police accused of torture, murder)

  6. embarrassing-drug-graph

    The most embarrassing graph in American drug policy

    Wonkblog
    28 May 2013
    Other news

    Law enforcement strategies have utterly failed to even maintain street prices of the key illicit substances. This figure shows that street drug prices fell by roughly a factor of five between in 1980 and 2008. Meanwhile the number of drug offenders locked up in our jails and prisons went from fewer than 42,000 in 1980 to a peak of 562,000 in 2007. We have remarkably little evidence that the billions of dollars spent on supply-side interdiction have much impact.

  7. blog-del-narco

    'They stole our dreams': blogger reveals cost of reporting Mexico's drug wars

    02 April 2013
    Other news

    For three years it has chronicled Mexico's drug war with graphic images and shocking stories that few others dare show, drawing millions of readers, acclaim, denunciations – and speculation about its author's identity. Blog del Narco, an internet sensation dubbed a "front-row seat" to Mexico's agony over drugs, has become a must-read for authorities, drug gangs and ordinary people because it lays bare, day after day, the horrific violence censored by the mainstream media.

  8. Why do Brazilian police kill?

    20 November 2013
    Other news

    An average of five people were killed by police every day in Brazil last year, according to an annual security report, revealing an entrenched culture of violence within the country's security forces. Brazil's Forum of Public Security joined forces with US non-governmental organization (NGO) Open Society Foundations to conduct an in-depth study of police killings as part of its annual report, concluding that the country's security forces are beset by a "culture of violence."

  9. perez-molina

    Guatemala's president: 'My country bears the scars from the war on drugs'

    18 January 2013
    Other news

    This is at the heart of the awakening in Latin America, a feeling that drugs prohibition has allowed rich and powerful cartels to rise to such prominence that they threaten the institutions of the state – the police, the judicial system, the army, the media, and the body politic. In Latin America it is not about rehab and criminality, it is about an existential threat to the state.

  10. Drugs in the UK: Why we need to talk about regulation and decriminalisation

    30 January 2015
    Other news

    Fighting the war on drugs in the UK costs an estimated £13 billion annually.

  11. Green green grass of home: police crack down on cottage industry of cannabis

    10 April 2013
    Other news

    Across the UK, 7,865 cannabis farms were discovered in 2011-12, an increase of 15% on the previous year's figures and over double the number for 2007-8 when police found just 3,032. Previously cannabis cultivation was done on a larger scale by gangs, who would fully convert terrace houses, knocking down walls to make larger growing areas, taking electricity direct from the mains, to avoid triggering the suspicion of the energy companies over unusually high consumption. Recently, there has been a shift towards smaller-scale farms, in line with a national trend, identified by the Association of Chief Police Officers' 2012 report into the commercial cultivation of cannabis .

  12. Weed: Decriminalise to stabilise

    26 October 2013
    Other news

    Jamaica's current volatile security environment and its economic malaise are reasons enough to seriously consider joining their Latin American counterparts to debate a raft of new policy options, not only in rhetoric, but also through public policy. Our prison conditions and local magistrate courts are bursting at their seams from inmate overcrowding and case overloads for marijuana possession that amount to miniscule consumption levels.

  13. Let the gangs wither and the state turn a profit

    04 November 2013
    Other news

    As a law enforcement professional, I was waiting impatiently for the government’s recommendations for fighting gang crime. I’ve been especially impatient to see what kind of initiative they would come up with to attack the root of the problem: the cannabis trade. My disappointment when they announced what it was as great as my impatience had been. The right approach would have been to rob criminals of their source of income.

  14. drugwar-mexico

    War on illegal drugs failing, medical researchers warn

    01 October 2013
    Other news

    The global “war on drugs” has been such a failure that illegal substances are now cheaper and purer than at any period over the past two decades, warns a new report by the Vancouver-based International Centre for Science in Drug Policy. Data from seven international government-funded drug surveillance systems show that drug use should be considered a public health rather than a criminal justice issue.

  15. hash-catch-denmark

    Police targeting cannabis users

    24 September 2013
    Other news

    Police in Copenhagen have cannabis users in their crosshairs as they struggle to close the illegal drug trade in Copenhagen commune Christiania. Task Force Pusher Street, the police’s Christiania unit, has been active since September 2012 and claims to have cut the cannabis trade there by 30 percent and announced that they intend to step up efforts against cannabis. Copenhagen mayor Frank Jensen said that he would rather see the sale of cannabis legalised.

  16. UN concerned by arbitrary arrests in Brazil

    27 March 2013
    Other news

    The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention voiced concern about the rising number of arbitrary arrests in Brazil, which has one of the highest prison populations in the world with around 550,000 persons, 217,000 (about 40%) of whom are in pre-trial detention. They also expressed serious concerns regarding the arrests and compulsory confinement of drug addicts due to forthcoming major events such as the Soccer World Cup in 2014 and the Olympic Games in 2016. (See: Prison overcrowding in Brazil)

  17. mdle-5-drug-law-enforcement-financial-investigation-strategies

    Drug law enforcement and financial investigation strategies

    31 August 2013

    Since the 1980s, there has been a major push in rhetoric and institution-building, emphasizing the centrality of attacking the financial lifeblood of drug trafficking networks and organised economic crimes. Much progress has been made in legislation and the creation of financial intelligence units. However, there are volumes of commentary and legal analysis, but almost nowhere in the world is there any systematic analysis of law enforcement or criminal justice inputs or outputs, let alone of outcomes in terms of reduced crimes of any kind or reduced harms arising from the ‘organised’ nature of crime.

  18. mdle-5-drug-law-enforcement-financial-investigation-strategies

    Drug law enforcement and financial investigation strategies

    31 August 2013

    Since the 1980s, there has been a major push in rhetoric and institution-building, emphasizing the centrality of attacking the financial lifeblood of drug trafficking networks and organised economic crimes. Much progress has been made in legislation and the creation of financial intelligence units. However, there are volumes of commentary and legal analysis, but almost nowhere in the world is there any systematic analysis of law enforcement or criminal justice inputs or outputs, let alone of outcomes in terms of reduced crimes of any kind or reduced harms arising from the ‘organised’ nature of crime.

  19. christiania-police

    Christiania task force netting arrests but locals call it harassment

    11 February 2013
    Other news

    Copenhagen Police said that the number of people being charged with possession of cannabis is up 23 percent since the creation of Task Force Pusher Street last September. The police strategy, however, flies in the face of recommendations by Copenhagen's mayor, Frank Jensen (Socialdemokraterne), who has openly advocated for legalising cannabis. Police suspect that a recent gang war is related to the cannabis trade.

  20. The War on Drugs - Count the Costs and Explore the Alternatives

    23 March 2011
    Other news

    The war on drugs creates massive costs, resulting from the enforcement-led approach that puts organised crime in control of the trade. It is time to count these costs and explore the alternatives, using the best evidence available, to deliver a safer, healthier and more just world.

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