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News / November 6, 2013

Anger as anti-smoking measures fall short

by Guy Hiscott

The EU Parliament has angered health campaign groups in Ireland after it failed to approve the full spectrum of proposed anti-smoking measures last month.
Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) voted against re-classifying electronic cigarettes as medical product, a change that – had it gone ahead – would have seen them more tightly regulated.
While MEPs did vote in favour of increasing the size of health warnings on tobacco products, they only approved warnings covering two thirds of the packet, rather than the initially proposed three quarters.
A ban on menthol cigarettes was approved, but the long lead-in required by politicians means it will not come into force until 2022.
The Irish Heart Foundation said it represented ‘a victory for the lobbying power of the tobacco industry over the health of the children of Ireland and Europe generally’.