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Last Updated: Wednesday, 14 May, 2003, 16:56 GMT 17:56 UK
Mowlam lecture 'sold-out' at Bath University
Dr Mo Mowlam
"I don't think it [the war in Iraq] was right"

The former Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Dr Mo Mowlem, has spoken out against the war in Iraq.

She made the comments during the Gerald Walters Memorial Lecture at the University of Bath on Tuesday.

Dr Mowlam, who resigned from the Cabinet in 2000, also talked about economic globalisation, environmental degradation, economic migration and the links between drugs and terrorism.

"For two years I was in charge of government drugs policy, she said.

I would certainly advocate the legalisation of cannabis for medical purposes
Dr Mo Mowlam

"We tried to limit the supply (of drugs) and in Columbia we sprayed the areas where drugs were being produced on an industrial scale: but in the end we failed."

Dr Mowlam also outlined the arguments in favour of the legalisation of some drugs.

"You have to take the money out of the market, she said.

"That's the only way to do it. You have to regulate supply, make sure it's clean and tax it.

"I would certainly advocate the legalisation of cannabis for medical purposes.

Sold out

"It's wrong that people with MS and other such problems should suffer in the way that they do.

Asked about the recent war in Iraq, the former Cabinet Minister said: "I don't think it was right and I don't think it was legal but I don't have enough legal knowledge to be 100% sure of the latter."

She also defended the United Nations: "I think it has a future. But it needs reforming: it needs to adapt to a different structure of society."

The lecture was entitled "Future difficulties we face on a global scale as individual nations" and was sold out.

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