Marijuana campaigners celebrate as Germany relaxes rules on cannabis

Marijuana campaigners in Germany on Monday lit celebratory joints as the country liberalized rules on cannabis to allow possession of small amounts, AP reports.

The new law legalizes possession of marijuana by adults of up to 25 grams for recreational purposes and allows individuals to grow up to three plants on their own.

It stipulates that individuals will be allowed to buy up to 25 grams per day, or a maximum 50 grams per month.

However, German residents age 18 and older will be allowed to join nonprofit “cannabis clubs” with a maximum 500 members each starting July 1 later this year.

The legislation also calls for an amnesty for cannabis-related offenses that will no longer be illegal, a development that regional authorities worry could overburden judicial system with thousands of cases.

According to the report, the German Cannabis Association, which campaigned for the new law, staged a “smoke-in” at Berlin’s landmark Brandenburg Gate when the law took effect at midnight, April 1, 2024.

Other public consumption events were planned throughout the country, including one in front of the Cologne cathedral and others in Hamburg, Regensburg and Dortmund.

The law was pushed through by the current coalition of Chancellor Olaf Scholz’ Social Democrats, the Greens and the pro-business Free Democrats, against opposition from some of Germany’s federal states and the center-right Christian Democrats.

Meanwhile, Christian Democratic leader, Friedrich Merz, insisted that his party will reverse the legislation if it wins national elections expected in the fall of 2025.

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