Peru’s Congress approves medical cannabis law

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Peru’s Congress overwhelmingly approved a medical marijuana bill that also has the support of President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, putting the country in line to become the latest in Latin America to legalize some form of cannabis.

The bill, approved Thursday, allows the cultivation of medical cannabis, as well as the production, commercialization, and importation of cannabis oil, according to Reuters.

The proposal received 67 votes in support while five lawmakers voted no and three abstained, according to the Latin American Herald Tribune. Because of the wide margin, the bill does not need to go through a second vote as most laws do, and can go straight to the executive for signing, the Tribune said.

Once the bill is signed, government regulators will have 60 days to create regulations, according to news reports.

Kuczynski came out in favor of medical marijuana legislation in February after police raided a home cannabis oil lab run by mothers making the medicine for children with cancer, epilepsy and other ailments, said.

Other South American countries with legalized cannabis include Brazil, Chile and Colombia while Uruguay has legalized recreational cannabis.