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Legalizing drugs gains ground in Latin America

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Jorge Dan Lopez/REUTERS

(Read caption) Guatemala's new President Otto Perez Molina (c.), a former general of the Guatemalan Army, attends a celebration to mark the founding anniversary of the Guatemalan Navy in the naval base of Puerto Quetzal, about 68 miles from Guatemala City, January 20.

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• A version of this post ran on the author's blog, centralamericanpolitics.blogspot.com. The views expressed are the author's own.

Guatemalan President Otto Perez Molina has repeated his suggestion that Guatemala and the other nations of Central America should consider decriminalizing drugs in order to help reduce violence.

The Guatemalan president said he will propose legalizing drugs in Central America in an upcoming meeting with the region's leaders. President Perez Molina said in a radio interview that legalization would include decriminalizing the transportation of drugs through the area. The Guatemalan president said the war on drugs, and all the money and technology received from the US, has not diminished drug trafficking in the area. While the details would have to be worked out, he would also consider setting up legal mechanisms to sell drugs (link in Spanish).

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