NEW REPORT PUBLISHED: History, science, and politics of international cannabis scheduling, 2015–2021

United Nations Cannabis Scheduling Outcome Report 2021 - FAAAT - WHO recommendations and subsequent Medical Cannabis Vote 2 December 2020On 21 April 2021, the herbal medicines “cannabis” and “cannabis resin” definitively ceased to appear in Schedule IV of the 1961 Single Convention on narcotic drugs (C61). They had been listed there since the entry into force of that treaty in 1964.
The process to scientifically review and reschedule Cannabis-related controlled drugs had been launched by the World Health Organization (WHO) on 2 December 2016. It went through a number of hindrances until finally getting submitted to a somewhat unique voting process on 2 December 2020, at the United Nations Commission on narcotic drugs (CND).
This report reviews (1) the scientific assessments of Cannabis-related controlled drugs and cannabidiol (CBD) by the WHO’s Expert Committee on Drug Dependence (ECDD) and (2) subsequent political discussions at CND that culminated with the 2 December 2020 vote, changing the scheduling of “cannabis” and “cannabis resin” under the C61.
Additionally, the report presents a digest of the 4 years of proceedings (2015-2021). It showcases elements that provide an understanding of the length and complexity of the processes involved. The report introduces previously-unpublished minutes, complements of information, details on stakeholders and their role. Furthermore, it highlights a number of bureaucratic and diplomatic issues; it compares the efforts undertaken by WHO and CND in terms of method, transparency, and involvement (or not) of interested parties, beyond governments.

Read, download, and share the report for free: History, science, and politics of international cannabis scheduling, 2015–2021 on Researchgate.

Suggested citation: Riboulet-Zemouli, K., Krawitz, M.A., and Ghehiouèche, F. (2021), History, science, and politics of international cannabis scheduling, 2015–2021. Vienna: FAAAT editions. ISBN: 979-10-97087-50-0.

–> To learn more about the process, check out our monitoring pages: 2015-2019 and 2019-2021.

FAAAT has been monitoring UN and WHO cannabis review processes since 2015. Nowadays, FAAAT is paused. Please support continued independent research and advocacy, on Patreon.

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