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Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center

With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

Ruling Party Calls For Marijuana Debate In French Polynesia
Concerned over high rate of cannabis-related crime

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Nov. 15, 2012) – The ruling Tavini Huiraatira party in French Polynesia is calling for public debate on cannabis use.

The party is concerned about the high rate of people being implicated in cannabis related crime and abuse of the drug.

A spokesperson for Tavini, Tea Hirshon, says it is important to discuss the issue.

"There are more and more plantations and more and more people in jail. So what do we do? We should speak about it and we should study what is being done in different countries and also the fact that many young people smoking and are damaging their brains and we don’t have the facilities to help cure them."

Tea Hirshon says the Tavini party does not have a position on whether to legalize cannabis, despite some local media reports that the party is pro-legalization.

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