By PJRC coresspondent Alci
In the end it was left to Guatemalan president Otto Perez Molina to deliver the message alone.
Following Vice President Joe Biden’s trips to Mexico and Central America on March 6, during which he promoted the drug war and hesitated to accept regional proposals for narcotics legalization, Central America’s presidents insisted they would meet again on March 24 to further discuss legalization as an alternative. However, when the time for the meeting came, Honduras, Nicaragua and El Salvador all pulled out at the last minute with vague excuses. Can one speculate that Biden’s recent tour of the region involved backdoor tampering? Time will tell.
Perez Molina delivered a speech calling for drug legalization. Molina was elected in 2011 with a hardline, right-wing platform but has surprised many with his demands for legalization and criticism of US drug war policy.
Al Jazeera English reported Molina as saying, "We are talking about creating a legal framework to regulate the production, transit and consumption of drugs." Molina stressed that the status quo of 40 years and has failed to produce any of the desired results. One of the speech’s most important proposals was Molina’s call for the US to offer compensation for drug raids it decides to carry out in Central America. Molina stated, "We're talking about economic compensation for every seizure undertaken and also the destruction of marijuana and cocaine plantations.”
On April 14, the Summit of The Americas will take place in Colombia, which has been ground zero for US drug war militarization for years. President Obama is expected to attend the Summit.