France rejects minister's call for debate on legal cannabis
PARIS (AFP) - France's Socialist government was forced to reassert its opposition to legalising cannabis on Monday after the education minister drew howls of outrage by calling for a debate on the issue.
Education Minister Vincent Peillon raised the issue on Sunday, saying legalising cannabis was a "serious question" that warranted debate.
After the remarks were pounced on by France's right-wing opposition, Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault's office insisted government policy had not changed.
"The prime minister and Mr Peillon spoke on the telephone this morning, there will be no decriminalisation of cannabis," Mr Ayrault's office said.