Amsterdam police will turn a blind eye to foreigners buying cannabis in its famous “coffee shops” when a national ban comes into force next year, the city’s mayor said on Wednesday.
The mayor’s comments put an end to months of uncertainty over a ban on foreign visitors purchasing cannabis at the shops that was introduced this year by a Dutch national government coalition which has since collapsed.
“It has been decided that Amsterdam law enforcement authorities will not attach any priority to enforcing the local residence requirement,” Amsterdam mayor Eberhard van der Laan wrote in a letter to the current government.
The previous Liberal-Christian Democrat coalition government which introduced the ban complained that coffee shops attracted crime and unwelcome visitors.
But the legislation was greeted with dismay by officials in Amsterdam, whose more than 200 coffee shops are a major source of income.
By Thomas Escritt, Reuters
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