Argument: Coca chewing and use are inviolable Andean traditions

Issue Report: Legality of coca production and consumption


Evo Morales “Let Me Chew My Coca Leaves.” New York Times Editorial. March 13th, 2009: “The custom of chewing coca leaves has existed in the Andean region of South America since at least 3000 B.C. It helps mitigate the sensation of hunger, offers energy during long days of labor and helps counter altitude sickness.”

In the 1988 Convention against Trafficking of Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances, Peru and Bolivia negotiated paragraph 2 of article 14 into the 1988 Convention, saying that measures to eradicate illicit cultivation and to eliminate illicit demand “shall respect fundamental human rights and shall take due account of traditional licit uses, where there is historic evidence of such use.”[1]