February 2014 - "It takes courage to not do what, to some people, seems logical on the drawing board ."
This was the astounding answer Ivo Opstelten, the Dutch Security and Justice Minister, gave the 35 Dutch mayors who recently joined forces in an effort to convince the minister to regulate the cultivation of cannabis, needed to legally supply the Dutch coffeeshops.
Many involved experts, backed by the Mayors of 35 Dutch towns and cities, including Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Utrecht, argue that the current laws only allow the sale but not the cultivation of marijuana. Dutch coffeeshops, which are allowed to sell hash and weed, cannot buy their stock legally. This encourages organized crime and wastes police time, according to the mayors.
Ahmed Aboutaleb, the mayor of Rotterdam, told local press that cannabis cafes had to rely on "murky worlds", and that the current situation in Holland was unsustainable.