Article by BBC News
The Liberal Democrats would legalise selling and growing cannabis if elected, the party has confirmed ahead of publishing its manifesto.
The party would allow licensed shops to sell the drug to over-18s, let people grow cannabis at home and introduce small “cannabis social clubs”.
The Lib Dem spring conference in 2016 backed a regulated cannabis market.
The party’s manifesto will also include a promise to extend paid parental leave for fathers from two weeks to a month.
Under UK legislation, anyone found possessing cannabis can be sentenced to a maximum of five years in prison, an unlimited fine or both punishments – but many argue that the law is not enforced.
Supplying or producing cannabis, which is a class “B” drug, attracts a maximum 14-year prison sentence, unlimited fine or both, under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.
It is legal to consume small amounts of marijuana in some other countries – including Norway, the Netherlands and Portugal – while in other countries police do not arrest people for possession.
In 2001, Portugal became the first country in the world to decriminalise the use of all drugs.