Malaysia to Decriminalise Low Level Drug Possession

The Malaysian government has plans to drop criminal penalties for the possession and use of drugs in small quantities as a way to battle addiction, but stresses it is not legalising drugs.

Malaysia currently harshly penalises drug possession. Anyone found with 200 grams of cannabis, 40 grams of cocaine, or 15 grams of heroin or morphine faces being charged with drug trafficking, which carries the death penalty.

Health Minister Dzulkefly Ahmad said in a statement on Thursday that the proposal for the “decriminalisation of drug addicts and addiction” will be a significant game changer.

He said addicted people will be treated as patients, not criminals. He said drug addiction is a complex, relapsing medical condition and throwing an addicted drug user into jail will not cure them.