Former Mexican President Ernesto Zedillo has admitted that he pursued the “wrong policy” toward drugs during his 1994-2000 period in office.
The criminalization of drug use has “roundly failed practically everywhere it has been applied,” Zedillo said at meeting of the Global Commission on Drug Policy in Mexico City this week.
In addition, he said, prohibition has caused “more public health problems and violations of human rights.”
Zedillo follows in the footsteps of his successor Vicente Fox (2000-2006), who, since leaving office, has been highly vocal in favor of legalizing soft drugs.
César Gaviria, the former president of Colombia, said Mexico could reduce its levels of violence and corruption by regulating certain drugs, thus limiting the power of the cartels.
Gaviria, who presented a paper at the conference titled “Regulation: Responsible Control of Drugs,” noted that the hard-line drug policies pursued in the United States have meant many nations have had to make great “sacrifices.”
Speaking at the United Nations this week, U.S. President Donald Trump called for international cooperation to “dismantle the production of drugs” and combat the epidemic of addiction that kills millions of people around the world each year.