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Maryland Governor To Pardon 175,000 Marijuana Convictions

Maryland Gov. Wes Moore is expected to issue a mass pardon of 175,000 marijuana convictions this week. These pardons mark one of the largest state-level pardons in the country and coincide with Wednesday’s Juneteenth holiday, commemorating the end of slavery in the United States. About 100,000 individuals with low-level marijuana possession charges will receive pardons, according to The Washington Post, which initially reported the news. Moore described his pardons as “the most far-reaching a

Do Lebanon's US Embassy attack, border clashes signal rise in extremism?

BEIRUT — A recent shooting incident at the US Embassy in Lebanon has raised concerns over the rise of extremism in the country, amid the proliferation of small armed groups, besides Hezbollah, that have been involved in cross-border attacks against Israel on the southern border. On June 5, several gunmen attempted to attack the US Embassy located in the town of Awkar, north of Beirut. Three men reportedly fired shots using small firearms toward the facility, injuring an embassy guard. The Leba

New York Governor Appoints New Acting Chief At Cannabis Agency

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul has announced new appointments for the state’s cannabis regulatory agency following the resignation of former Executive Director Chris Alexander. These leadership changes are part of Hochul’s effort to change the direction of the legalization of cannabis sales in the state, which has faced multiple issues since its implementation. Felicia A. B. Reid has been named Executive Deputy Director and Acting Executive Director at the Office of Cannabis Management (OCM), the

Is Israel gearing up for war with Hezbollah?

Rockets fired by Hezbollah at northern Israel last week caused days of wildfires that burned over 2,500 acres of land, raising fears of an all-out war amid fresh calls for a military escalation from Israeli officials. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated on Wednesday that he is prepared to take "very strong action" to restore security along the border, while Israel’s northern army commander said the military is ready for war. Israeli Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich and National S

Cannabis Tops Alcohol In Daily Use For First Time Ever, Study Finds

Americans are now choosing cannabis over alcohol for daily consumption, marking the first time in history that such a shift has taken place, according to a new study. Published this week in the journal Addiction by the Society for the Study of Addiction, the data, authored by Jonathan P. Caulkins, a Professor of Operations Research and Public Policy at the Heinz College of Carnegie Mellon University, reveal a progressive trend of cannabis overtaking alcohol in Americans' daily consumption, a sh

South Africa Legalizes Cannabis For Personal Use

South Africa takes a groundbreaking step forward in cannabis reform, legalizing the cultivation and possession of the plant for personal use. With President Cyril Ramaphosa's final approval, South Africa becomes the first African country to legalize cannabis for personal use. President Ramaphosa signed the Cannabis for Private Purposes Act on May 28, removing cannabis from the Drugs and Drug Trafficking Act. This move enables amendments to the Medicines and Related Substances Act, the Plant B

What Is THCA, And Why Doesn’t The DEA Consider It Legal Hemp?

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency has sent a letter to explain why THCA doesn’t meet the definition of legal hemp. The letter is a response sent on May 13 from the DEA’s Chief Drug & Chemical Evaluation Section, Diversion Control Division, Terrence Boos, to Shane Pennington, cannabis lawyer and partner at law firm Porter Wright Morris & Arthur LLP, who requested the control status of tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA) under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) with a letter dated April 25. The l

How Raisi's death will test the unity of Iran's hardliners

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, 63, died in a helicopter crash in the north-western province of East Azerbaijan province on 19 May, along with Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian and six others. To demonstrate the Islamic Republic of Iran's ability to handle any crisis, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei declared five days of national mourning and appointed First Vice President Mohammad Mokhber as interim president, with the country expected to hold early presidential elections on 28 June. How

House Committee Approves Farm Bill Amendment To Ban Delta-8 THC

An amendment to the new Farm Bill may put an end to the gray market for intoxicating hemp-derived products, such as delta-8 THC, by closing the loophole opened by the 2018 Farm Bill. The U.S. House Committee on Agriculture voted on Thursday to approve an amendment proposed by Republican Rep. Mary Miller for Illinois that would ban intoxicating hemp-derived and synthesized cannabinoid products, which has been added to the 2024 Farm Bill draft. As a result, the amendment would federally ban all

DEA Publishes Proposed Rules To Reschedule Marijuana

Progress toward the federal rescheduling of marijuana took a step forward yesterday. The Drug Enforcement Administration published proposed rules, open to comment, in the U.S. Federal Register to reschedule marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule III of the Controlled Substances Act. This represents a further concrete move in changing U.S. marijuana policy and easing industry regulations: the most significant change in national marijuana legislation since 1970. The proposal initiates a 62-day pu

Japan is on the Verge to Change its Policy on Cannabis

Image source: Paid for on license via Adobe Firefly & Duncan Lewis via Japan is known to have one of the strictest policies on cannabis, but something has been moving forward in recent months. The country’s parliament passed a bill in December to legalize medical products containing cannabinoids, amending the Cannabis Control Law. However, at the same time, it established new criminal penalties for the use of cannabis, putting an end to the legal loopholes that have surrounded c

Most Thais Support Rescheduling Cannabis As A Drug, Survey Finds

A survey finds that most Thais support the new government’s decision to reverse cannabis policy and relist it as a controlled substance by the end of this year. The findings of a survey released by Thailand’s National Institute of Development Administration on Sunday show that about 76% of Thais support the government’s plan to reschedule cannabis as a controlled substance after its decriminalization in 2022. The survey, conducted by phone between May 14 and 15, included 1,310 citizens aged 15

Is fentanyl-laced cannabis a myth

Image source: Paid for on license via Adobe Several news reports and social media posts in the United States have claimed the presence of fentanyl-laced cannabis in the illegal market in recent years. News reports have documented cases of people overdosing where fentanyl-laced cannabis was implicated. However, in most instances, follow-up investigations found no connection between the overdose and contaminated cannabis. But despite numerous debunking articles, such reports have perpetuated a

Czech Lower House Approves Draft Law Regulating HHC

The lower house of the Czech Republic’s Parliament has approved a draft law that would regulate synthetic cannabinoids and new psychoactive substances such as HHC. The Chamber of Deputies voted on May 3 in favor of a draft law concerning psychomodulating substances, securing 81 votes out of the required 78. The draft law would regulate substances like kratom and HHC, a synthetic cannabinoid with similar effects to THC but milder, alongside other newly identified substances. The regulations of

Ohio Marijuana Sales Expected To Start In Mid-June

Ohio lawmakers have approved regulations on the sale of adult-use marijuana after a months-long deadlock, with anticipation that sales will start in mid-June. The Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review, a legislative body tasked with ensuring state agencies adhere to their statutory authority, approved without objection on Monday rules that would pave the way for a dual licensing program allowing existing medical marijuana dispensaries to sell adult-use products. Jim Canepa, superintendent of t

Swiss Initiative Aims To Embed Cannabis Legalization Into Constitution

A group of unknown citizens has launched a popular initiative to include a new article on cannabis legalization in Switzerland’s federal constitution. The official gazette of the federal government of Switzerland published today the text of a popular initiative titled “Cannabis legalization: opportunities for the economy, health, and equality.” which aims to add an article to the constitution that would make cannabis legal. This initiative represents a unique opportunity for Swiss cannabis use

Cannabis Company MedMen Goes Bankrupt With $411 Million In Liabilities

Multistate cannabis company MedMen leaves the industry by filing bankruptcy proceedings in Canada with about $411 million in liabilities. MedMen announced on April 26 that it filed for bankruptcy under Canada’s Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act on April 24. The business advisory firm B. Riley Farber Inc. was appointed as the company’s bankruptcy trustee. The company also announced that its American subsidiary based in California entered receivership in the Los Angeles Superior Court on April 23 fo

Cannabis Rolling Papers May Pose Health Risks From Heavy Metals, Study Finds

The lack of regulation on cannabis rolling papers may expose users to health risks due to the presence of unsafe quantities of heavy metals, according to a new study. Researchers from Lake Superior State University in Michigan recently published a study in the journal ACS Omega in order to measure the heavy metal content in commercially available cannabis rolling papers. They analyzed the elemental composition of 53 commercially available rolling papers and assessed the potential risks of expo

CBD May Be A Promising Treatment For Crack Use Disorder, Study Suggests

A new study found that CBD could be a promising option for treating crack use disorder, showing fewer adverse effects compared to standard pharmaceutical approaches. Published by the International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction in early April and first reported by Marijuana Moment, the study conducted by a group of researchers in Brazil examined whether CBD is a feasible, safe, well-tolerated, and effective option compared to standard pharmacological treatment for reducing crack use in

Will the EU strike a new anti-migration deal with Lebanon?

A rising number of Syrian migrants leaving Lebanon for Cyprus in recent months has prompted Nicosia to demand that the European Union (EU) intervene to halt the influx. Senior EU officials have suggested that Brussels could strike a deal with Beirut similar to recent anti-migration pacts signed with Egypt and Tunisia, which have been criticised by human rights groups. The Cypriot government has recorded more than 2,000 Syrian refugees arriving from Lebanon by sea in the first three months of 2
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