12 January 2018, 10:03
Georgian Patriarchate opposes marijuana decriminalization
The draft law on decriminalization of soft narcotic drugs in Georgia fails to account important measures to prevent and combat the drug addiction, the Patriarchate has stated.
The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that in November 2017, the Constitutional Court of Georgia abolished criminal punishments for using marijuana, finding that they violate the freedom to choose recreation type.
The bill on using light narcotic drugs is now under consideration at the Georgian Parliament. The amendment package implies exemption from criminal liability for personal use of drugs and storage in small quantities.
"We regard using drugs a grave sin, but the Georgian Patriarchate does not support arrests of drug addiction patients," the Patriarchate has stated.
In their opinion, first mechanisms should be in place to protect families and children from drug addicts. This needs healthy lifestyle promotion. Also, it is necessary to toughen the measures against illegal import of drugs into the country, the Patriarchate believes, noting that the country has no rehabilitation centres, where drug addicts could rehabilitate.
Clergymen believe that the issue should be examined with the participation of psychologists, doctors, rights defenders, lawyers, the church, teachers and law enforcers.
Full text of the article is available on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’.