Drugs policy protest focuses on fentanyl ({{commentsTotal}})

A number of famous Estonian hip-hop artists, writers, social activists and MPs held a protest in front of Parliament on Thursday, to protest the state's policy on illegal drugs.

“We are not asking for much, just a complete amnesty for all cannabis-related crimes and measures to end the fentanyl tragedy,” said writer Kaur Kender.

He said the synthetic drug fentanyl is as dangerous as heroin, and "turns people into robotic zombies".

Besides Kender, artists such as Genka, Ice, Okym, Reket, Beebilõust and Vana Yoss, as well as prominent figures Hardo Pajula, Lisette Kampus, Olavi Ruitlane and Eerik-Niiles Kross were among those who held a speech.

Fentanyl is produced in illegal laboratories in Russia, and has replaced heroin in Estonia.

According to the EU, Estonia has the highest rate of drug-related deaths in the union, seven times higher than the union's average – mostly due to fentanyl.

Reform Party MPs Yoko Alender and Eerik-Niiles Kross made a proposal to set up a Parliament committee on drug-related problems. “Drug deaths in Estonia are the highest in Europe. The current policy is no longer yielding results. We must investigate to find out what we are doing wrong,” Alender said, adding the state must cooperate with scientists and find new ideas to change current policies.

Kross said the aim should be a thorough report on the situation, and should include proposals for change.

Kross added that traffic deaths and suicides, among other categories, have seen decreases, but drug-related deaths are increasing. He added that the current policy does not work, and police are yet to make a dent in the fentanyl business.

Editor: J.M. Laats

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