Around 18 per­cent of women smoke to­bacco

There are around 7.5 mil­lion cig­a­rette smok­ers across Iraq, fig­ures show

The Kurdish Globe - - NEWS - By Salih Wal­ad­bagi

The fig­ures show that around 18 per­cent of the women in the au­ton­o­mous Kur­dis­tan Re­gion are cig­a­rette smok­ers, ac­cord­ing to a sur­vey con­ducted by Zhian Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion (ZHO).

“At least 43 per­cent of the cig­a­rette smok­ers of the Re­gion are the young men aged from 15 to 25,” Head of the or­ga­ni­za­tion, Qas­sim Aziz, said.

The fig­ures also show that smok­ing rates among the doc­tors is high and is ex­pected to be around 32 per­cent.

The sta­tis­tics also demon­strate that around 3 per­cent of the re­li­gious men use to­bacco.

Ac­cord­ing to the con­ducted sur­vey the smok­ing cost across Kur­dis­tan is as­sumed to be around IQD 20 mil­lion. Aziz says that the smok­ing rate is very high in the three prov­inces of Kur­dis­tan Re­gion, Er­bil, Su­laimani and Duhok, de­scrib­ing the phe­nom­e­non as very “per­ilous”.

Ac­cord­ing to the health sta­tis­tics across Iraq, in­clud­ing Kur­dis­tan, there are more than 7.5 mil­lion smok­ers, while, most of them will face short­ness of breath in the fu­ture.

How­ever, the in­ter­na­tional health or­ga­ni­za­tions warn about the short and long terms of smok­ing, es­pe­cially, among the young men. The short-term health out­comes of smok­ing con­sist of res­pi­ra­tory and non res­pi­ra­tory ef­fects, ad­dic­tion to ni­co­tine, and the as­so­ci­ated risk of other drug use.

Long-term health out­comes of youth smok­ing are re­in­forced by the fact that most young peo­ple who smoke reg­u­larly con­tinue to smoke through­out adult­hood. Cig­a­rette smok­ers have a lower level of lung func­tion than those per­sons who have never smoked. Smok­ing re­duces the rate of lung growth, ac­cord­ing to med­i­cal in­ter­na­tional health re­searches.

In ad­di­tion, Aziz says that the Shisha smok­ing rate among the young men in Kur­dis­tan has ap­prox­i­mately reached 36 per­cent.

It is said that to­bacco most prob­a­bly kills half of its users. The in­ter­na­tional fig­ures show that around 6 mil­lion peo­ple die be­cause of smok­ing. Out of which, at least 5 mil­lion are from di­rect to­bacco use and more than 600, 000 are non­smok­ers ex­posed to sec­ond-hand smoke, ac­cord­ing to World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion (WHO). The or­ga­ni­za­tion pre­dicts that the death toll will reach up to 8 mil­lion by 2030.

“There are al­most one bil­lion smok­ers across the world. Of which, around 80 per­cent are liv­ing in the low-in­come or mid­dle-in­come coun­tries,” WHO says.

Ev­ery six sec­onds one smoker dies due to to­bacco and it ac­counts one for 10 adult’s deaths ap­prox­i­mately.

Ac­cord­ing to in­ter­na­tional fig­ures, smok­ing caused 100 mil­lion deaths in the 20th cen­tury. While it is ex­pected that if the cur­rent trends con­tinue, it might cause around one bil­lion deaths in the 21st cen­tury.

No Smok­ing Law in

Pub­lic Places

Al­though, Kur­dis­tan Par­lia­ment rat­i­fied the No Smok­ing Law in Pub­lic Places in 2008 but ac­cord­ing to the Kur­dis­tan Re­gional Gov­ern­ment (KRG) Min­istry of Health’s Spokesper­son “No one has brought to jus­tice for smok­ing in pub­lic places so far”.

In keep­ing with the law, any per­son who smokes in a pub­lic place will be fined with IQD 10, 000. How­ever, in the cafe­te­rias and restau­rants the penalty is higher and the min­istry can pun­ish the smoker from IQD 50, 000 to 500, 000.

Ac­cord­ing to the ar­ti­cle num­ber five of the KRG’s No Smok­ing Law; it is nec­es­sary that to­bacco risks should be writ­ten on the cig­a­rette pack­ets in Kur­dish lan­guage. But the law has not been yet en­acted, and dif­fer­ent sorts of cig­a­rettes are im­ported to the Re­gion with­out con­sid­er­ing the con­di­tions.

Ac­cord­ing to ZHO, if a reg­u­lar smoker in Kur­dis­tan smokes two pack­ets of the cheap­est kind of to­bacco which is around $1 so it costs him $60 per month. If he con­tin­ues smok­ing for the next 10 years, he needs to pay $7, 200 to buy the cheap­est kind.

This pic­ture shows a lady smok­ing in a pub­lic place

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