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The war is speeding up Ukraine’s efforts to legalize medical cannabis

Ukraine’s government is moving to legalize medical cannabis, in part due to the trauma wrought by Russia.

Minister of Healthcare Viktor Liashko wrote on Facebook on Tuesday – more than 100 days into the war – that Ukraine’s cabinet had approved a bill “on regulating the circulation of cannabis plants for medical, industrial purposes, scientific and scientific-technical activities to create the conditions for expanding the access of patients to the necessary treatment of cancer and post-traumatic stress disorder resulting from war.”

The draft bill will now head to Ukraine’s parliament, where it will need to be approved by at least 226 votes, the Kyiv Post reports. It’s a reworked version of a bill that lawmakers originally failed to pass last summer.

Liashko suggested there will be more support for legalizing medical cannabis this time around.

“We understand the negative consequences of war on the state of mental health,” he wrote. “We understand the number of people who will need medical treatment as a result of this impact. And we understand that there is no time to wait.”

He said the bill will ensure a “full cycle of cannabis-based drug production in Ukraine,” stressing that the country will gradually develop its own industry rather than relying on imports. [Read More @ NPR]

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