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Why not join us on twitter and on Facebook for updates throughout the day?

 

UK news

Calls for medicinal cannabis to be legalised to help people now turning to the streets for their pain relief

He's been threatened, his home has been attacked, and he lives in fear of going to jail for possession of cannabis. But he says he has no choice | ITV.com, UK

Go Sober: could you survive a month without alcohol?

A new charity campaign is encouraging us to give up alcohol for the whole of October. Dr Phil Hammond explores the physical implications | Telegraph, UK

Alcohol abuse in Northern Ireland 'costs £900m a year'

The cost of alcohol abuse to taxpayers could be reduced if investment was made in early intervention services, two addiction charities have claimed | BBC, UK

15% of tobacco sold in Wales 'is illegal'

Almost half of smokers in Wales have been offered illegal tobacco to buy, a charity has found. The first survey into the size of the illegal tobacco market in Wales by the anti-smoking charity ASH Wales suggests it is larger than any English region | BBC, UK

You and yours, BBC Radio 4, 17/09/2014 at12.15

[Includes] The tobacco company behind a smoking cessation device that's being approved by the NHS | BBC Radio, UK

Chris Grayling plans network of mental health centres in prisons

Justice secretary says he wants every prisoner who needs it to have access to the best possible mental health treatment | Guardian, UK

Police crack down on alcohol abuse with breathalysers on club doors

Pub and club-goers in Hemel Hempstead could be breathalysed on their nights out as Herts Police take part in a national alcohol awareness campaign | Hemel Today, UK

 

International news

Cocaine found in Vatican librarian's car

Bedridden cardinal's aide entrusted vehicle to two men, who bought drugs thinking they were protected by diplomatic plates | Guardian, UK

Islamists bankrolled by large-scale African drug-smuggling operation

Militant groups paying west African drivers up to £8,600 to transport cocaine to Europe under noses of UN peacekeepers | Guardian, UK

European scientists to assess risks of new stimulant drug 4,4-DMAR

Leading European scientists convene in Lisbon today to undertake the risk assessment of a new psychoactive substance currently raising health concerns in Europe | EMCDDA, Portugal

Results from the 2013 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Summary of National Findings and Detailed Tables

National survey shows lower rate of illicit drug use among adolescents ages 12 to 17. Report also shows continued lower rates of current drinking use and binge drinking among those aged 12 to 17 [ Press release] | SAMSHA, USA

Presidential Determination -- Major Drug Transit or Major Illicit Drug Producing Countries for Fiscal Year 2015

Presidential Determination on Major Drug Transit or Major Illicit Drug Producing Countries for Fiscal Year 2015 | White House, USA

New trends and regional differences in the manufacturing of methamphetamine

The illicit manufacture of methamphetamine has traditionally been concentrated in North America (primarily in Mexico and the United States) and East and South-East Asia (China, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand), close to the major consumer markets. The latest UNODC's Global SMART Update study, however, shows that it has recently spread to other countries | UNODC, USA

Big increase in deaths from narcotic painkiller overdoses

The number of Americans dying from accidental overdoses of narcotic painkillers jumped significantly from 1999 to 2011, federal health officials reported Tuesday | CBS News, USA

Marijuana users who feel low get high

Adolescents and young adults who smoke marijuana frequently may attempt to manage negative moods by using the drug, according to a study in September’s Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs | PsyPost, USA

Magic mushrooms defeat tobacco addiction in ground-breaking pilot study

The hallucinogenic substance found in magic mushrooms could help smokers kick the habit, according to a pilot study published this week in the Journal of Psychopharmacology | PsyPost, USA

The Discovery of Mexico's First Coca Plantation Could Upend the Cocaine Business

Last week marked a troubling first in the long and sordid history of the Mexican drug world. There was no bloodshed, corruption, torture, or any of the grisly hallmarks of the country's ongoing narco war. There was only — a field of small shrubs with green oval-shaped leaves and bright red berries. For the first time ever in Mexico, the authorities discovered a coca plantation | VICE, USA

Coming Soon to Theaters Near You: E-Cigarettes

SmokeStik's Product Placement in 'Cymbeline' Has Far-Reaching Implications for Hollywood and Big Tobacco | Wall Street Journal, USA

State Government backs programs in schools and sports clubs to tackle drugs and alcohol

Schools and sporting clubs across the state are the target for a new State Government initiative to combat drug and alcohol issues in young people | Herald Sun, Australia

Drug experts warn of increasing ice threat in Canberra

Rehabilitation and drug experts from across the ACT are warning that more Canberrans are seeking treatment for dependence on ice or crystal methamphetamine as the purity and strength of the drug increases | Canberra Times, Australia

Tony Abbott backs legalisation of medical cannabis

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has thrown his support behind the legalisation of cannabis for medical purposes | Sydney Morning Herald, Australia

 

Blogs, comment and opinion

Will Nick Clegg’s drug reforms have any influence on voters?

67 per cent of the public agree there needs to be reform when it comes to drug policy, but will it be enough to win back lost voters? | Left Foot Forward, UK

Getting drunk off a humidifier isn't all it's cracked up to be

Last year, a couple of my friends at VICE tried to smoke alcohol, with funny, albeit overly complicated and unsatisfying results | VICE, UK

Drugs and recreation: a dispatch from the Evergreen state

In today’s post, the author makes several cultural observations about marijuana as it joins beer, coffee, and wine to become the newest psychoactive substance legally produced and consumed for fun in Washington | Points: the blog of the alcohol and drugs history society, USA

Here’s What I’ve Finally Concluded About 12-Step Programs

AA and the rest remain the biggest and most polarizing force in the addiction community. I quit heroin and cocaine using the Steps and have covered addiction as a journalist for 25 years—and I'd argue that the picture is decidedly mixed | Substance.com, USA

Philip Morris Sues Uruguay Over Graphic Cigarette Packaging

Shopping for cigarettes in Uruguay isn't a pleasant experience. Photos of decaying teeth, premature babies and gruesome hospital scenes wrap around every pack. In fact, the country requires manufacturers to cover at least 80 percent of the packaging with medical warnings and graphic images | npr blogs, USA