Weed warning from Singapore, S Korea

Weed warning from Singapore, S Korea

Teachers warn their pupils about the danger of cannabis at Ban Bang Kapi School in Bangkok early this month. (Photo: Varuth Hirunyatheb)
Teachers warn their pupils about the danger of cannabis at Ban Bang Kapi School in Bangkok early this month. (Photo: Varuth Hirunyatheb)

Thai embassies in South Korea and Singapore are the latest to warn travellers from Thailand not to bring cannabis or cannabis products with them, as they could face a prison term or even the death penalty.

These mark the latest in a growing list of Thai embassies warning Thais that cannabis is still illegal in most countries.

The Thai embassy in Seoul posted a notice on its Facebook page Tuesday, saying that Thai travellers must not carry cannabis, hemp or products containing these plants into South Korea.

The post also said that possession or use of the substances carries a jail term of up to five years, while smuggling cannabis or hemp is liable to a jail term from five years to life imprisonment.

Growing or selling the plants likewise can result in a jail term of at least one year. Violators will be deported from South Korea and barred from returning.

In Singapore, the Royal Thai Embassy on Wednesday posted on its Facebook page that Thai travellers must not bring cannabis-based products or cannabis into the city-state. Possession and consumption of cannabis or hemp can lead to the death penalty, it warned.

At the border with neighbouring Cambodia, the Aranyaprathet immigration office in Sa Kaeo on Wednesday displayed signage warning travellers and truck drivers crossing into Cambodia not to bring cannabis or cannabis-based products into the country.

Cannabis is listed as a narcotic in Cambodia and possession or consumption of cannabis or its products will draw penalties under Cambodian law.

The governor of Sa Kaeo, Parinya Pothisat, and Aranyaprathet district chief Chanathip Khokmanee worked with Sa Kaeo's tourist police on a campaign to inform travellers about the ban on bringing cannabis from Thailand into Cambodia.

Authorities say Thai and foreign travellers must remember that cannabis is still a narcotic drug in the neighbouring country.

Thailand is the first country in Southeast Asia to decriminalise cannabis, removing the plant from its category 5 narcotics list by an announcement in the Royal Gazette on June 9.

The Thai embassy in Japan on June 24 warned Thais not to carry cannabis or cannabis-based products into Japan because penalties are severe.

In Japan, possession of cannabis or its products for import or export purposes carries a prison term of up to seven years, while possession for sale can result in up to 10 years in jail and/or a fine of up to ¥3 million (786,200 baht), the embassy warned via Facebook.

Earlier, the Thai embassy in Jakarta issued a warning on June 21 stating that Thais must not carry cannabis or cannabis products into the country.

It cited similar harsh penalties.

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