Amsterdam's cannabis cafes will remain open to tourists, city's mayor says
Tourists visiting Amsterdam will not be banned from using the city’s famous cannabis cafes, its mayor has said. Eberhard van der Laan believes that changing the law would lead to more crime.
His decision follows months of arguments over Dutch drug laws after the country’s government said it would leave it to local authorities whether or not to impose a ban.
“The 1.5 million tourists will not say 'then no more marijuana', they will swarm all over the city looking for drugs. This would lead to more robberies, quarrels about fake drugs, and no control of the quality of drugs on the market - everything we have worked towards would be lost to misery,” said Mr Van der Laan.
The city relies on tourism and there were fears that a ban would make it less attractive to foreign travellers. A ban was anticipated after the previous conservative-led Dutch government introduced a national ban on foreigners using cannabis by the end of the year.
But the relaxation of the rules allowed Amsterdam to break from the plans. Each year, some 1.5 million tourists visit Amsterdam to consume the drug, which is a Class B substance in the UK.
The government wanted to curb drug use and prevent drug dealers from using the Netherlands as a base. But the plan was strongly opposed by cafe owners, 700 of which sell cannabis in the country.
They argued that the law unfairly discriminated against other EU residents, and said that 90 per cent of their income came from foreign tourists, the BBC reported. It is not strictly legal to use cannabis, but its use is tolerated and possession of small amounts was decriminalised in the 1970s.
- 1 Rarest Beanie Baby of them all could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
- 3 Driving while dehydrated can be just as dangerous as drink driving, study suggests
- 4 Farmer told to tear down mock-Tudor castle after hiding construction behind hay bales
- 5 One Direction: Louis Tomlinson launching his own record label, has already 'signed two acts'
Isis video purports to show beheadings and execution at gunpoint of 30 Ethiopian Christians and destruction of churches in Libya
Rarest Beanie Baby of them all could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
Professional big game hunter Ian Gibson crushed to death by elephant during hunt
Driving while dehydrated can be just as dangerous as drink driving, study suggests
Ben Affleck asked TV chiefs to hide slave-owning ancestry, new hacked Sony emails published by Wikileaks claim
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
£18000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...
£16500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Chiropractic Assistant is needed in a ...
£18000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...
£28000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company provides coaching ...