Limitations on hookah smoking on the way, minister says
ANKARA – Anadolu Agency
According to current regulations, business places that allow hookah smoking without possessing the necessary permission will be fined 7,612 Turkish Liras.Turkey’s government will introduce harsher limitations on the consumption of hookah, widely known as “nargile” in Turkey, Health Minister Mehmet Müezzinoğlu has said,
warning that hookah smoking is as dangerous as other tobacco products.
“All of the [cigarette] bans will also be valid for hookah smoking. The struggle against hookah smoking will continue with determination,” Müezzinoğlu said Aug. 1 in Ankara.
“We will struggle against hookah in the coming days. All of the bans on tobacco products will be valid for hookah. We will enact all necessary regulations on it,” said Müezzinoğlu.
There are several studies on addiction, lung damage and health hazards associated with hookah smoking, he said.
Müezzinoğlu also said the ban on tobacco consumption would be extended, as smoking will be banned in children’s parks, adding that measures concerning shopping malls, hospitals and restaurants were also on the way.
According to the current regulations, business places that allow hookah smoking without having the necessary permission will be fined 7,612 Turkish Liras and that the fine would be doubled if they continued to allow smoking.
Cafés where hookahs are used should be at least 100 meters away from educational institutions and student dormitories. Such places must feature open areas to smoke hookah. The regulation also bans the sale of hookah to those under 18 years of age.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), one hookah session typically lasts 20 to 80 minutes, and a hookah user may inhale as much smoke during one session as a cigarette smoker would from smoking 100 or more cigarettes.