December 13, 2013 – Huffington Post
José “Pepe” Mujica shot back on Friday at the president of the International Narcotics Control Board, a U.N. agency, for saying that his administration refused to meet with the agency’s officials before legalizing marijuana this week.
Mujica batted down the criticism, insisting that his administration is open to discussing the law and accusing the INCB President Raymond Yans of applying a double standard by criticizing Uruguay, even as U.S. states pass laws to legalize recreational marijuana consumption.
“Tell this old guy not to lie,” Mujica told reporters, according to Colombian daily El Espectador. “Any guy in the street can meet with me. Let him come to Uruguay and meet with me whenever he wants… He thinks that because he’s in an international position, he can tell whatever lie he wants.”
The INCB president said on Wednesday he was “surprised” that the Uruguayan government “knowingly decided to break the universally agreed and internationally endorsed legal provisions of the treaty.
But Mujica dismissed the criticism as a double standard, pointing out that the U.S. states of Colorado and Washington have already legalized weed and that both of the states’ populations individually exceed Uruguay’s 3.4 million inhabitants.
“Do they have two discourses, one for Uruguay and another for those who are strong?” Mujica asked.
“There’s always going to be pressure,” Mujica told Brazilian daily A Folha de São Paulo before the law passed. “There’s an apparatus in the world that lives by repressing, and it costs a lot of money.”