A scientific committee convened by the French government has concluded that it might be “appropriate” to legalise cannabis for therapeutic use in a report made public on Thursday.

The committee, convened by France's ANSM (the French National Agency for the Safety of Medicines and Health Products), stated that it would be “appropriate to authorise the use of therapeutic cannabis […] in certain clinical situations and in cases where [existing] therapies provide insufficient relief or are not well tolerated”.

According to the committee, the law should authorise the use of the plant in cases of severe pain, for certain types of epilepsy, as part of ancillary care for cancer patients, in certain “palliative situations” and for the muscular contractions linked to multiple sclerosis.

The committee ruled out recommending that cannabis be administered by smoking, given the associated health risks.