SANTIAGO DE CHILE - Thousands of people protested in Santiago de Chile under the slogan 'cultivate your rights' to demand the decriminalization of marijuana and a new drug policy in the country.
The demonstration on Sunday, called by various social organizations, took place in a festive and family atmosphere in the center of the Chilean capital.
Nicolas Espinoza, president of Movimental, one of the organizers of the event, explained that the main objective of the protest is to demand legalization of marijuana in Chile where private consumption is allowed but cultivation and sale are still prohibited.
"What is required is a new drug policy based on scientific evidence, to make it more fair and efficient. We seek the decriminalization of cannabis, of its consumption, possession and cultivation, and hopefully regulated access to the substance," he told Radio Bio.
"Decriminalization does not mean that people can go smoke on the streets or to sell it at kiosks. There must be a strict legal framework controlling access to the substance," he added.
Since December 2015, Chile has legalized the production and sale of cannabis-derived medicines, a legislation which countries such as Puerto Rico and Colombia have also adopted.
The regulation has been based on it's medicinal use. In March, 6,000 marijuana plants growing in a rural area in the south of the country, the largest legal marijuana farm in Latin America, were harvested.