Mayor Of Amsterdam Calls For The Legalisation Of Cocaine To Undermine Criminals

Jesse Williams

By Jesse Williams

Jesse Williams

28 Jan 2024

The Mayor of Amsterdam, Femke Halsema, has called for the regulation of the sale and use of cocaine in an effort to cut into the revenue criminal enterprises are making in the trade.

“Let us conclude that hundreds of years of discouragement and repression have achieved very little,” Halsema said in an interview with Dutch newspaper Het Financieele Dagblad. “Apparently people have a need for stimulants. There is a market for that.”

Rather than ending the trade Halesma believes it’s time to “regulate and manage” it.

“We have handed the market to unscrupulous criminals. They earn billions. And in the meantime, the war on drugs is disrupting entire countries, causing countless victims and strengthening the criminal business model,” she told the press.

Halsema herself is not new to advocating for new approaches to drug policy. For example. She previously said that “the war on drugs is not working”, during a conference on organised crime in October 2022.

Leader of People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy, Dilan Yesilgoz responded by declaring that she thinks “regulating the cocaine trade is nonsense”, adding that: “the Netherlands, as an important transit country for drugs, suffers enormously from organised crime and how it has creeped its way into other areas of life. We are dealing with major violent crimes; with journalists, judges and lawyers who are threatened. That is my priority.”