Police say about 300 people participated in a march in Helsinki. Organisers claim the number was larger. The march was followed by speeches and a panel discussion on the subject of legalizing cannabis. Similar events in Tampere and Turku each attracted some 200 participants.
The Finnish Cannabis Association says arrests for use, possession and home cultivation of the substance are a waste of public funds. A convicted offender can also face job loss.
The association particularly wants to legalise home cultivation of cannabis, which it describes as a competitive alternative to commercial cultivation and illegal trafficking. It claims as many as 20,000 households cultivate cannabis in Finland.