Skip to comments.Lebanon smoking ban takes effect, sparking anger
Posted on 09/04/2012 11:49:56 AM PDT by Impala64ssa
smoking ban in all closed public spaces, including coffee shops, restaurants and bars, went into force in Lebanon on Monday under new legislation that promises hefty fines for lawbreakers.
In a country considered a "smokers' paradise," the law took effect a year ago in airports, hospitals and schools, but took hold on a wider basis on Monday, also banning tobacco advertisements criticised for luring youths into the habit.
Smokers caught lighting up in a closed public space face a $90 penalty, while restaurant or cafe owners who turn a blind eye to offenders could be fined anything from $900 to $2,700.
The number of smokers in Lebanon is among the highest in the region and cancer-related illnesses directly linked to tobacco are rising at a rapid rate, health professionals say.
Still, there is speculation as to how far the new ban can actually hold in a country where cigarette, cigar and nargileh (water-pipe) smoking is so popular and widespread.
It was met with discontent among clients of the coffee shops of the central Hamra district of Beirut.
"We have mountains of waste and minibuses spewing carbon dioxide. The government would have done better to address these issues before prohibiting smoking," said Saad Fleifel, peering over a nargileh on a cafe terrace.
Like the majority of people interviewed by AFP, he accused the authorities of depriving him of the right to "unwind" in Lebanon, a country plagued by years of war, instability and economic woes.
(Excerpt) Read more at ca.news.yahoo.com ...
Looks like a prohibition issue. Just wait for the under-the-table sales of black market items. It will fit the culture in Lebanon.
They haven't finished blowing each other up and machine gunning the survivors, have they?
And now some of them have what passes for undies in the Middle East all bunched up over smoking?
Initially I was thinking Lebanon, PA in the Dutch Country. You all know how them barn-raising, buggy driving, suspenders wearing Amish terrorists are ;)
The Middle East was the last bastion of smoking freedom. I recall not too long ago walking through the opulent shopping malls of Dubai smoking a cigarette and seeing ashtrays every 50 feet or so, somthing I hadn't done in the U.S. in twenty years. I've been so conditioned to smoking outside that I couldn't shake the feeling I was doing something wrong and kept my cigarette discretely cupped in my hand.
Public smoking bans have hit Asia, Russia and Ukraine and now they're moving into the Middle East. I guess that's it. By the way, most of these bans are coming on the heels of Western tourists who complain about the smoke.
If the Lebanese have always been heavy smokers, why is only now that the incidence of cancer is "rising at a rapid rate?"
Which one puts out more smoke? A cigarette or an RPG?
GREAT NEWS!!!! Lebanon has solved all its big problems, so now it can get to those things on the bottom of the todo list!!!!