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Country News
Abu Dhabi - The First International Meeting on Waterpipe Tobacco Smoking: Building Evidence for Intervention and Policy

Over the past decade, tobacco smoking using a waterpipe (hookah, narghile, shiha) has become a world-wide epidemic, with current use rates approaching those of cigarettes in many populations. It is particularly prevalent in the Arab world, and marketing efforts have played to the cultural and social aspects of waterpipe use. A nascent but growing evidence base unanimously points to the high potential for deleterious health effects of waterpipe use, including nicotine addiction. At the same time, waterpipe tobacco smoking remains peripheral to tobacco control efforts. The time is now ripe to raise the dialogue on this issue by having an international conference dedicated purely to the waterpipe.

Anti-Smoking Drive - Saudi Arabia

There are press reports that 1002 lawbreakers have been caught and fined at Riyadh’s King Khaled International Airport so far after the ban on smoking came into effect. That is really great news. Smoking is a real threat not only to the smokers but those who are around them. It is true that in some countries tobacco industry generates revenue to the government but this is nothing when compared to the costs of smoke-borne diseases. Saudi Arabia is one of the biggest consumers of tobacco in the world. In this country the government and other organizations and volunteers (including expatriates) have to join hands to launch a campaign to make the people aware of the hazards of smoking.

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