|Nol van Schaik/Facebook|
Good news from Amsterdam, where the mayor says the Dutch city will continue to allow foreign tourists in its famous cannabis-dispensing coffeeshops after January 1. That’s the day when the infamous WeedPass was to become mandatory in the Netherlands — with the effect of shutting everyone but Dutch locals out of the thriving coffeeshop scene.
Mayor Eberhard van der Laan made it clear in an interview with AT5, in answering the statement of Dutch Justice Minister Ivo Opstelten’s spokesman, who said Mayor van der Laan “could not” go ahead allowing foreign tourists to buy marijuana in Amsterdam’s coffeeshops nexst year.
|The Smokers Guide to Amsterdam/Facebook|
|Nol van Schaik: “Amsterdam will stay the way it is, a special place”|
“I have been discussing this with the Minister for a year now; maybe I know him better than his spokesman,” Mayor van der Laan said.
Minister Opstelten reportedly called Mayor van der Laan after the interview was aired. “He said it was a nice interview in De Volkskrant,” van der Laan said. “This also indicates that we do not really disagree.”
Van der Laan said that it’s a difficult situation because there is disagreement on “soft drugs” policy in the Dutch government itself. In border regions of the Netherlands, the stricter WeedPass policy will still be followed, according to the mayor.
“Amsterdam will stay the way it is, a special place, where freedom has been reinstated by Mayor Eberhard van der Laan,” famed coffeeshop entrepreneur Nol van Schaik, owner of Willie Wortel cannabis shop, posted on Facebook Friday. “I applaud him!”