NEW YORK – The head of the United Nations agency in Latin America said on Monday that their must be serious thought given to legalisation of drugs in order to reduce the human cost of prohibition,

Tens of thousands of people across Latin America have died in violence stemming from the struggle to control the lucrative trade in narcotics, particularly in Mexico, where murders fueled by warring drug cartels reached a record high last year.

Alicia Barcena, a Mexican who heads the Santiago-based Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), the United Nations’ regional arm, said to a Latin America forum in Paris at the time, it had come to options of exploring a new strategies.

She said, “I’m going to be very provocative. Who would drug legalisation be good for? Latin America and the Caribbean, for God’s sake. Because the illegality is what’s killing people,”

“It’s time to seriously consider legalising drugs.”

According to official figures Peru, Colombia and Bolivia are the top producers of coca leaves, these leaves are used to make cocaine, many of which are smuggled through Mexico to reach the world’s biggest market, the United States.

Countries such as the United States that have pursued tougher and restrictive policies towards drugs, but also have a growing liberalisation of marijuana laws in many states across the country, affects to legalise the drug.

Photo Credit- The Express Tribune

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