Liberals call for legalizing hard drugs, while ‘zero-tolerance’ policy strains Christiania

Legalizing weed might calm down Christiania, which is under heavy police attention.

By Roosa Welling

Danish police make raids to Christiania’s Pusher Street on a daily basis. Photo: Harvey Kong

“Don’t be shy, come get high!” yells a man behind a stand made of green crates of beer.

In one of Copenhagen’s most unique areas, free town of Christiania, cannabis is sold openly.

For 100 Danish kroner you get 1,2 grams of marijuana, and it is one of the largest street-level cannabis markets in Northern Europe. That’s why many tourists might think the activity is legal.

Police raids take place almost every day, and the business continues as soon as the stands are back up.

Legalizing cannabis has been debated in Denmark for a long time, and in February three liberal parties called again for it. According to CPH-Post, Danish parties Alternativet, Liberal Alliance and Enhedslisten argue that it would prevent drug abuses especially among the young people.

However, according to professor Vibeke Frank from Centre for Alcohol and Drug Research, the general tendency of Denmark is still going towards a ‘zero tolerance’ drug policy.

On Tuesday the 3rd of March, the police used chainsaw to break the dealers’ stands, while a group of locals and tourists watched. Photo: Harvey Kong

This article is aimed at Finnish audience and could be published in https://www.hs.fi/ulkomaat/.