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Greece Announces New Plans to Ban Smoking

by VR Sreeraman on June 1, 2010 at 6:30 PM
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 Greece Announces New Plans to Ban Smoking

The Greek government took advantage of World No Smoking Day Monday to announce new plans to ban smoking in public places, although Greeks have proved resistant to previous crackdowns.

"This total ban will be applied to all public places, at work, in restaurants, cafes and bars," the health minister said in a statement, as the government tried to tighten an already existing but often defied ban.

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Casinos and night clubs over 300 square metres (3,229 square feet) are temporarily exempt from the September ruling, given an extra eight months to make the necessary changes.

A bill in preparation should also extend the ban on outside tobacco advertising, to cinemas and street campaigns that hand out free cigarettes.

It is the government's third attempt to implement a tobacco ban since 2002, the latest coming into effect in July 2009, but with few checks or disciplinary measures in place, Greeks have been quick to break the law.

Over 40 percent of people smoke in Greece, which is the second biggest producer of tobacco in Europe.

Source: AFP
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