Serbian Patients Face Jail as Medical Marijuana Legalisation Stalls.. so far 20 have gone to jail


Balkan Insight is reporting…. eople with long-term illnesses are still being given prison sentences in Serbia for using cannabis to treat medical conditions, as the government has been stalling on legal reform while vowing even harsher anti-drug enforcement. Fifty-nine-year old Dragoljub Mrdjic has suffered from epilepsy for most of his life. Few medicines have helped him, but his condition drastically improved after he started treating himself with cannabis oil in 2001. “I tried standard medicine, but there wasn’t much of a result. But after I started using cannabis oil, I almost stopped having the attacks,” Mrdjic told BIRN. As cannabis oil from black market is expensive and Mrdjic is poor, he started producing cannabis oil in 2016 to treat himself, his brother, who is also having epileptic attacks, and his wife, who suffers from bipolar disorder. However, just a year later, he was arrested and sentenced to three years and two months in jail. “I’m guilty because I wanted to help myself and my family. I’m an old man already and I have to go to jail with murderers and real criminals because I wanted to cure myself – it’s absurd,” he said resignedly. His fate is not unique in Serbia. A citizens’ association called the Initiative to Change the Cannabis Legislation, IRKA, says that at least 20 of its members have been given jail sentences for using cannabis for medical purposes, and thousands more have been convicted of possession of a small amount of the plant for personal recreational use. As long ago as 2015, the government set up a working group to prepare for the legalisation of cannabis for medical purposes, but no visible progress has been made since then, leaving patients who would have benefited from cannabis treatment facing potential arrest and jail. In December 2020, a…

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Source : Serbian Patients Face Jail as Medical Marijuana Legalisation Stalls.. so far 20 have gone to jail

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