Bolivians Ask British Government to Respect Their Coca (Derek Wall/Alborada.net)
“It is said that the virgin Mary chewed on the coca as she lamented the loss of her son leaving her teeth marks on the back of the Coca…”
Bolivian Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca visited Britain on 20 January, as part of a tour of European Union countries, to lobby the British ConDem government to support Bolivia's amendment to the 1961 UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs.
At present, due to US government pressure, the use of coca leafs is illegal. Coca, as we all know, was used not just as the original ingredient of Coca Cola but is processed into cocaine. Cocaine is the main fuel of the armed gangs that are wrecking havoc in countries such as Mexico and El Salvador.
However coca has been grown and used for thousands of years without harm in countries like Bolivia and Peru. Indeed Bolivian President Evo Morales was a leader of the coca producers union.