Colombian Congress on Wednesday prohibited the carrying and consumption of drugs, which, in small doses, was previously allowed by the constitution.
The 60-14 vote in the Senate was a victory for President Alvaro Uribe who had been trying to see the possession of drugs for personal use prohibited for years, but repeatedly failed to see his initiative approved by Congress.
The constitutional amendment does not seek to put drug users in jail, but to allow addicts or chronic users to receive medical attention, Colombia’s Interior and Justice Minister said.
The new law gives the authorities the tools they say they need to persecute local drug dealers, who carry small doses of drugs, not for personal use, but for sale.
The law will now be sent to the Constitutional Court. After the court’s approval the initiative will become law.