Blair Signals Opposition to Softer Line on Drugs

Blair Signals Opposition to Softer Line on Drugs
Posted by FoM on July 29, 2001 at 23:09:48 PT
By Paul Peachey
Source: Independent
Tony Blair indicated his opposition to any relaxation of the law on drugs yesterday, the day he arrived in Jamaica to discuss ways of reducing drug-related crime. Despite recent signs within the Government of a willingness to debate the decriminalisation of cannabis, Mr Blair was said to have told friends yesterday that he is firmly against any liberalisation of Britain's drugs laws. 
During his one-day visit to Jamaica, Mr Blair held talks with the Prime Minister, P J Patterson, and announced a new 200,000 aid package to train Jamaican police in the latest forensic techniques, to help try to secure convictions against leaders of the island's violent drug gangs. Mr Blair said that the violent activities of these groups were also causing growing concern in Britain, where 30 murders had been linked to Caribbean gangs. Most of the killings have taken place in London, where the Metropolitan Police has a special unit to deal with gun crimes within the African-Caribbean community. Security was tight for Mr Blair after several weeks of unrest during which more than 30 people have been killed in politically-motivated violence between gangs and police. Baroness Amos, a Foreign Office minister who is accompanying Mr Blair, said: "There is a big concern about the violence in Jamaica, and we are also concerned about some of the knock-on of that into the United Kingdom." Half of the cocaine in Britain and the United States is thought to have come through the Caribbean. MPs from the three main parties have joined a recent groundswell of support for a change in the law on drugs. David Blunkett, the Home Secretary, has called for an "adult, intelligent debate" on the issue and the House of Commons' home affairs select committee launched an inquiry into the issue last week. After his meeting with Mr Patterson yesterday, Mr Blair said the two countries must step up their efforts against drugs. He said: "We really have to strengthen not just our trade and investment but policing and law enforcement, so that we can tackle this evil trade that does so much damage here and in the United Kingdom and in the rest of the world." Jamaica has a history of gang violence dating from the 1970s when the gangs were used to threaten and cajole voters on behalf of the country's two main political parties. Many of the gang members are now involved mainly in drug trafficking, but some are still involved in bloody feuds with their former political enemies. The visit to Jamaica, the first by a British prime minister since 1987, is the first leg of a tour of Latin America and the Caribbean, which will include a historic stop in Argentina. Complete Tile: Blair Signals his Opposition to Softer Line on Drugs During Jamaican VisitSource: Independent (UK)Author: Paul PeacheyPublished: July 30, 2001Copyright: 2001 Independent Newspapers (UK) Ltd.Contact: letters Articles:Jamaica: The Ganja Culture Review of Drug Policy Planned Articles - UK 
Home Comment Email Register Recent Comments Help

Comment #8 posted by Sudaca on July 30, 2001 at 16:33:59 PT
funny I thought of Clinton too
Hypocrites both of 'em. Blair 'll go down in history as a weasel w/o principles. Hopefully the UK people think hard beofore voting Tory in the hopes of getting someone who'll elgalize it. This is sounding familiar; get some young conservative pols to make noise pro cannabis, election time , boom you have the NeoNazi War Cabal in power again. 
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #7 posted by Doug on July 30, 2001 at 09:48:58 PT
Blair and Clinton
Tony Blair is the Bill Clinton of England.  He talks like he has some progresive ideas, but when it comes to deliver, he's just like John Majors, the Tory before him, only he's not as honest. The only reason he won big in his last election is that the Tories are even more breft of new ideas. At least the Tories realize that, which is why that are starting to talk about legalization.Of oourse, we don't know how much of Blair's talk is just for the public; even he must realize that many of the people of England are not with him on this one. Maybe talk like this is just cover for some changes on the ground. Or am I being too optimistic?
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #6 posted by TroutMask on July 30, 2001 at 08:18:08 PT
Dear Tony...
Dear Tony,The steamroller is coming your way. Get on board or get run over.Your Friend,TroutMask
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #5 posted by meagain on July 30, 2001 at 05:22:33 PT
Why not???
Come 0n Blair have a sense of humor.... legalize it.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #4 posted by kaptinemo on July 30, 2001 at 04:22:54 PT:
Hitting the snooze alarm too often
These pols; you'd think they'd get the message by now.They remind me of people who, when the alarm clock goes off, slap the snooze button. Repeatedly. And then they have to hustle to meet the bus...full of people who got up when they were supposed to, didn't dither, and were ready to go to work.The alarm clock of drug law reform has been ringing for some time. It rang thirty years ago with the Shafer Report, the LeDain Commission and the Wooton Report. The antis grumbled foully, reached over and slapped the snooze alarm. While they slept, more prisons were built, more non-violent 'offenders' incarcerated in them, more civil rights sacrificed on the altar of the DrugWar, more innocent little kids got whacked by both drug dealers and police, more families destroyed, careers ruined, property stolen by greedy forfeiture armed DrugWarriors.The alarm clock has been getting ever shriller with it's tone, warning of a point-of-no-return for the pols. But they just keep slapping that snooze button, hoping it will go away.Sorry, antis, but you've hit that button so many times now, it's broken. The alarm clock is still going off, despite your best efforts to ignore it. And your neighbors don't like the sound of it; they are now getting to the point where they'll happily bash your political head in with it to get your attention.Mr. Blair, you'd best quit trying to imperiously ignore the wishes of your electorate...or they won't be 'yours' for much longer.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #3 posted by lookinside on July 30, 2001 at 04:09:17 PT:
the shrub & co....
strike again......
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #2 posted by mayan on July 30, 2001 at 03:57:50 PT
Blair is only a puppet put there by the hidden powers that be. 
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #1 posted by E. Johnson on July 30, 2001 at 00:41:22 PT
Phony Tony
A liberal with an iron fist.He hides his hate with a smile.
[ Post Comment ]

Post Comment