The Home Secretary David Blunkett, rejected a recommendation from MPs that Ecstasy should be downgraded to a Class B from a Class A drug.
A report from the Commons home affairs select committee, says ecstasy – a drug popular among the young in dance clubs – should be reclassified to attract a lesser jail sentence.
Although the MPs insist they are not condoning use of the drug, which killed 36 people last year, they consider it less harmful than other Class A substances such as and Crack Cocaine.
Placing it in a lower category would put it alongside barbiturates, amphetamines and – for now – cannabis.
David Blunkett added: “Ecstasy can, and does kill unpredictably and there is no such thing as a safe dose. I believe it should remain Class A”.
He also ruled out the committee’s suggestion that “safe” injecting houses, the so-called “shooting galleries” that exist elsewhere in Europe, should be opened.