04/04/2014 12:04 BST | Updated 04/04/2014 12:59 BST

Nigel Farage: I've Never Done Drugs, But Legalise Them

Dave Thompson/PA Archive
UK Independence Party Leader Nigel Farage during 'A beer and a fag with Farage' event at the Comedy Store in Manchester, on the second day of the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester.

Nigel Farage has said drugs should be made legal as the war against them was lost "many, many years ago".

Speaking during a 'phone Farage' call-in hosted by the Daily Telegraph, the Ukip leader said while he had "never taken" drugs himself, he thought their criminalisation was counterproductive.

"The lives of millions of people in Britain are being made miserable by the huge criminal element that surrounds the illicit drugs trade," he said.

"I’m not pro-drugs by the way, as someone with teenage children, and I’ve seen fairly close to hand the damage that drugs can do to young people. So I hate drugs, I’ve never taken them myself, I hope I never do, but I just have a feeling that the criminalisation of all these drugs is actually not really helping British society."

Farage, who is partial to the occasional pint of beer and puff on a cigarette, added: "I personally think that the war on drugs was lost many, many years ago."

"I think we should look at it and if ever there was a subject where we needed a genuine Royal Commission – not to kick it in the long grass – but a genuine Royal Commission to examine Portugal, to examine perhaps what has happened in one or two sates in America and in Switzerland, this subject would be it.”