Duterte bans smok­ing in pub­lic

The Myanmar Times - - World -

PHILIP­PINE Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte will this month ban smok­ing in pub­lic, the health depart­ment said yes­ter­day, fur­ther strength­en­ing some of the tough­est to­bacco reg­u­la­tion in Asia.

The fire­brand leader has waged a ruth­less law and or­der cam­paign since July that has left more than 3000 peo­ple dead while, as a long-time mayor of the south­ern city of Davao, he im­posed cur­fews on mi­nors and banned pub­lic al­co­hol sales at night and shirt­less men.

The up­com­ing law is in ad­di­tion to leg­is­la­tion ban­ning to­bacco ad­ver­tis­ing and reg­u­lat­ing smok­ing in in­door pub­lic places, as well as a statute that re­quires graphic im­ages of smok­ing health haz­ards to be printed on cig­a­rette pack­ag­ing.

“There has been a sig­nif­i­cant re­duc­tion in smok­ing, but the re­duc­tion has been slow,” as­sis­tant health sec­re­tary Eric Tayag said.

The World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion said 20.6 per­cent of the Philip­pine pop­u­la­tion smoked as of 2013, 10 years after the to­bacco reg­u­la­tion act was passed.

Mean­while, in a speech at the pres­i­den­tial palace on Oc­to­ber 11, Mr Duterte said he would soon visit China and hoped also to travel to Rus­sia, as he again crit­i­cised long­time ally the United States for be­ing “ar­ro­gant”.

The mis­sion to China will be Mr Duterte’s first since as­sum­ing the pres­i­dency on June 30. –

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