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Dealers Won’t Sell, But Will Provide Free Smokes During Strike

April 8, 1994

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) _ Hashish dealers in Copenhagen refused to sell their wares Friday to protest government efforts to end open drug sales, but offered desperate customers a free smoke or two to tide them over.

Unlike other places in Copenhagen, cannabis is sold openly on what is known as ″pusher street″ in Christiania, a former cavalry barracks occupied since 1971 by squatters, hippies, anarchists and drug dealers.

Normally Christiania’s streets are lined with dealers who ask pedestrians if they are interested in ″some goods.″

However, since Wednesday, when the hash dealers went on strike to protest government efforts to end the open sales, the streets have been almost empty. A sign directs customers to other sources, considered more dangerous because they sell hard drugs.

But Christiania’s dealers are also handing out free hashish to smokers suffering from withdrawal.

″When the customers come, we send them to other markets. But if they want to smoke, then they can smoke with us,″ said Jacob Brondum, a marijuana dealer for the last 10 years and Christiania resident since 1991.

The dealers want the sale of hashish legalized and they want their customers to actively support them.

They have asked smokers to ″come out of the closet,″ and write letters to politicians newspapers supporting the strike and the Pot Party, which wants to run for Parliament.

Customers are also asked to sign a petition opposing a ban on hash sales and threats to close the so-called Christiania ″free state″ if street dealing doesn’t end by next February.

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