Amsterdam to Close 1/5 of city’s Marijuana Cafes

AMSTERDAM, Netherlands – Amsterdam will close almost a fifth of its marijuana cafes to comply with a national ban on having them near schools, the mayor said Friday.

Another city, Eindhoven, said it would start issuing permits to marijuana growers in order to better regulate the trade — if the national government approves.

The plans were announced as 33 major Dutch cities held a “weed summit” to discuss the nation’s long-standing policy of tolerating marijuana use while routinely arresting growers.

Marijuana is technically illegal in the Netherlands, but can be sold in small amounts in designated cafes — euphemistically known as “coffee shops” — without fear of prosecution. More than a quarter of the country’s cafes are in Amsterdam, where they are a major tourist attraction.

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~ by spyaokid on November 24, 2008.

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