WHO Recommends Cannabis Reclassification

The World Health Organization (WHO) is calling for a change to international drug treaties and recommending the rescheduling of cannabis and cannabis resin.

The forty-first Expert Committee On Drug Dependence (ECDD) convened in November of 2018 at WHO headquarters in Geneva where they conducted critical reviews of cannabis and other substances to determine the appropriate levels of international controls and whether they should change.

In to a letter to U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres from January 24, 2019, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebryesus presents recommendations from the forty-first meeting of the ECDD which state that cannabis and cannabis resin should be removed from the Schedule IV category of the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs (CND). The two would remain in Schedule I.

The letter calls for synthetic tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), also known as dronabinol or Marinol, to be moved from Schedule II of the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances (CPS) to the CND’s least restrictive category, Schedule I.

Upon the adoption of the recommendations regarding dronabinol, THC would be removed from the Schedule I category of the CPS and added to Schedule I of the CND.

WHO is recommending that cannabis extracts and tinctures be deleted from the Schedule I category of the CND and put into Schedule III.

The ECCD recommendations also state that cannabidiol (CBD) preparations containing less than 0.2 percent of delta-9 THC should not be scheduled within International Drug Control Conventions.