Abandoning such cautious rhetoric in UN diplomacy, Petro contrasted the dangers of drug addiction with what he described as humanity’s more destructive “addiction to irrational power, profit and money.”
“The opinion of the power decrees that cocaine is poison and must be persecuted, and that an overdose of it will cause only minimal death…but instead, coal and oil must be protected, even if it could wipe out all of humanity,” he said.
Petro also called global rhetoric around saving the environment “hypocrisy” after U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned that “our planet is burning”, citing advice and warnings from scientists about the destruction of the Amazon rainforest It has been ignored for a long time.
“The climate catastrophe that killed hundreds of millions was not caused by the planet, but by capital. By the logic of more and more consumption, more and more production, and some people making more and more,” he added.
end the war on drugs
Petro, who took office last month, called for an end to the war on drugs across Latin America in a speech.
“Reducing drug use does not require war,” he said. “It takes all of us to build a better society.”
Petro has said in the past that he wants Colombia to export food rather than cocaine and to incentivize other kinds of production through agricultural subsidies rather than weapons. His administration also recently introduced a bill to legalize recreational marijuana in the country, Colombian Senator Gustavo Bolivar – a close ally of Petro Petro – told CNN in August that he It is believed that regulation will one day extend to cocaine as well.
On Tuesday, his call for a regional approach to drugs did not fall on deaf ears. At a news conference after the day’s speech, Bolivian President Luis Arce said Tuesday that his government has been in discussions with Petro on the subject of the speech.
“He shared with us the ideas he talked about today. We wanted to hear a very specific proposal,” Arce said.
While noting that Bolivia and Colombia face very different situations when it comes to drug trafficking, Arce added that he does think Colombia, Peru and Bolivia – the world’s three largest cocaine producers – should adjust in combating the problem their “standard”.
All three countries have been run by left-leaning leaders since Petro took office.
Bolivia already has a thriving licit market for coca by-products, mainly dried leaves chewed by indigenous peoples, and the governments of Bolivia and Colombia have previously pushed for regional rethinking of drug policy at multilateral meetings.
Caitlin Hu of CNN New York and Hira Humayan of Atlanta. CNN’s Stefano Pozzebon previously reported from Bogota.