British entrepreneur Richard Branson said an unreleased UN report calls for countries to decriminalize the use and possession of all drugs.
“It’s exciting that the UNODC has now unequivocally stated that criminalisation is harmful, unnecessary and disproportionate, echoing concerns about the immense human and economic costs of current drug policies,” Branson said.
Branson said he decided to leak the contents of the report before they were released due to fears the UN would, “bow to pressure by not going ahead with this important move”.
The document was to be released at a conference in Malaysia Oct. 18, but reports said it was delayed because of its content.
A UN official has denied those reports, and said the document is not complete and, “cannot be read as a statement of UNODC policy.”
Branson, who sits on the Global Commision for Drug Policy, said he and his colleagues “could not be more delighted” by the potential shift in policy, and, “it’s good to see evidence and common sense prevail at UNODC.”