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Politics

Thailand delists marijuana as narcotic, releases 3,071 inmates

De facto cannabis decriminalization ahead of new law stirs concerns over misuse

A Thai smokes a joint in Bangkok on April 20 during a demonstration promoting the recreational use of marijuana.   © Getty Images

BANGKOK -- Thailand's decriminalization of cannabis, delisting hemp and marijuana as narcotics on Thursday, in effect sparks a fresh controversy.

With the change, the Thai government allowed individuals to grow cannabis plants at home for health purposes. However, smoking cannabis recreationally remains unlawful, punishable by a fine of 25,000 baht ($723) and up to three months in jail. Commercial cultivation without a license is not allowed either.

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