(TIME) Uruguay became the first country in the world to legalize the marijuana trade on Tuesday in a 16-13 vote. Supporters of the law gathered near Congress holding green balloons and Jamaican flags in homage to Bob Marley.
The Senate voted on a law that establishes a state-regulated industry and allows citizens to grow, buy and smoke marijuana, Reuters reports. The bill, which is supported by President Jose Mujica, passed a lower chamber in July. Mujica has trumpeted the legislation — closely watched by other Latin American countries — as an alternative strategy to tackle drug trafficking from the U.S.-backed “war on drugs.”