Parliament suspends discussions on marijuana cultivation bill, bill may be withdrawn

Parliament Speaker Irakli Kobakhidze  made the statement in the wake of the Georgian Orthodox Church’s harsh criticism of the marijuana export bill. Photo: Parliament of Georgia press office., 20 Sep 2018 - 15:52, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgian Parliament Speaker Irakli Kobakhidze has stated today that parliament is suspending discussions on the marijuana cultivation bill and says that the bill may be withdrawn entirely if lawmakers perceive a threat of boosting illegal drug trafficking. 
Kobakhidze says that discussions have been postponed because of certain segments of society and the Church have reacted negatively to the bill. 

We are a political force for which people are the major value. Our key priority is acting to protect human interests and show particular respect to the Patriarch and the Georgian church,” Kobakhidze said.

Kobakhidze  said that “certain forces” have used the marijuana issue to trigger public turmoil and he called upon Georgians not to be provoked.

If we see any threat that the bill may encourage the illegal circulation of drugs, we will immediately withdraw the bill,” Kobakhidze said.

The Georgian government announced earlier this month that the Interior Ministry drafted a bill which, if confirmed by parliament, will allow the cultivation and export of marijuana for medical and cosmetic purposes 
The Interior Ministry earlier presented two bills in parliament regarding marijuana: one pertains to restrictions on marijuana consumption, the other to marijuana cultivation and export.