Nobel economists, others urge end to ‘war on drugs’

By William Schomberg LONDON (Reuters) – Global efforts to thwart the drugs trade have failed and the time has come for a radical rethink, according to a group of Nobel-prize winning economists, a former U.S secretary of state, the deputy prime minister of Britain and others. Citing mass drug-related incarceration in the United States, corruption and violence in developing countries and an HIV epidemic in Russia, the group urged the United Nations to drop its “repressive, one-size-fits-all approach” to tackling drugs. Signatories of the text included five Nobel-prize winning economists – among them Kenneth Arrow, Christopher Pissarides and Thomas Schelling – as well as former U.S secretary of state George Schultz, British deputy prime minister Nick Clegg and Javier Solana, a former European Union foreign policy chief. Colombia’s president has called for a debate on alternatives to the war on drugs.
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