Russia Gets Tough New Smoking Law

No more lighting up in bars, offices, playgrounds

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Feb 25, 2013 2:30 AM CST

(Newser) – Life is about to get tougher for smokers in a country with one of the world's highest rates of tobacco use. Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed tough new anti-smoking measures into law, banning smoking in workplaces, restaurants, long-distance trains, and other public places like beaches and playgrounds, the BBC reports. The anti-smoking bill—which sailed through parliament despite stiff opposition from the country's powerful tobacco industry—sets a minimum retail price for cigarettes and introduces new restrictions on advertising. The move comes as part of a push to improve public health that has already seen beer reclassified as an alcoholic drink instead of a food.

Women smoke cigarettes at a shopping center in Moscow.
Women smoke cigarettes at a shopping center in Moscow.   (AP Photo/Misha Japaridze)
Young people smoke outside the Kremlin.
Young people smoke outside the Kremlin.   (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)
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