Mexican rock icons Mana called on their government to consider legalizing marijuana as a way of curbing the drug-related violence that has claimed more than 40,000 lives in the country since December 2006.

While rejecting "the indiscriminate consumption" of drugs, lead singer Fher Olvera suggested that taking pot out of the equation could reduce the level of killing among rival cartels.

The group commented at a press conference on the occasion of the filming of a new music video in San Miguel de Allende, a picturesque town in central Mexico.

The suggestion about pot legalization came in response to a question about last week's arson attack in Monterrey, where 52 people died in a casino whose owners were being extorted by members of the Los Zetas cartel.

Mana, which has sold more than 20 million discs worldwide, is preparing for a concert tour that will take the group to the United States, Spain and several Latin American countries.