World No-Tobacco DayMay 31, 2023
May 31 is World No-Tobacco Day.
Since the designation of World No-Tobacco Day in 1987, worldwide attention has been directed to addressing the issue of smoking and no-smoking campaigns get ever more active.
Governments, health institutes and many organizations across the world have waged no-smoking campaigns in various forms and ways in recent years.
The following are some of the examples:
China is encouraging people to quit smoking through such ads as “Tobacco is devouring the baby alive” and “No-smoking Family”. Russia, under the anti-tobacco law, took a measure to ban smoking in most of public places including schools, colleges, hospitals, cultural, sports and recreation facilities, and state organs.
Cuba banned smoking in such public places as shops, offices, educational institutions, theatres, gyms and stadiums. Vietnam is taking active measures to protect women and children from passive smoking.
India is running “When You Quit” campaign through national radio broadcasting and TV forums and the Brazilian association of medical science, together with a local cancer foundation, is running a program to ban ENDS (Electronic Nicotine Delivery System).
Indonesia, the Philippines, Bangladesh, Nigeria and other countries have also adopted new laws banning smoking in public places and put in place strict fining mechanism for lawbreakers.
It is noteworthy that several countries are tightening up the legal control on cigarettes after it was revealed that countries with high smoking rate have recorded a corresponding rate of COVID-19 infection and death during the outbreak of global health crisis.
Despite various no-smoking campaigns and the growing social concern about negative impact of smoking on society and individual and public health, smoking is still taking a heavy toll, claiming more lives than natural disasters or accidents.
According to the data released by WHO, annual death toll caused by smoking was 6 million before the COVID-19 but has now surpassed 8 million.
The DPRK government is now implementing an innovative and constructive anti-smoking policy to protect the lives and health of its people and to establish more civilized living conditions.
The “Tobacco Control Law of the DPRK” was adopted on July 20 2005 and was later amended, and its executive regulations were introduced on March 21 2011.
When the global health crisis was at its height, the “Tobacco-Prohibition Law of the DPRK” consisting of 31 provisions was adopted on November 4 2020 to further tighten control on smoking, protect the lives and health of the people and to provide them with civilized and hygienic living conditions, thus contributing to the advancement of socialist civilization.
Information on the harm of smoking is widely shared and a social atmosphere and material conditions to help prevent smoking are created so that people would voluntarily join the no-smoking campaign. Production, sale, import and export of cigarettes are being strictly monitored and controlled for gradual decrease of the smoking rate.
Meanwhile, the Non-smoking Research Centre is now playing a key role in the development and sale of various quit-smoking products.
The research centre has recently developed tobacco cessation nutrition pills made mainly from native Korean herbs, nicotine patch and gum which help suppress the urge to smoke, and many other healthy foodstuffs made from natural herbs such as soft drink made from Amur cork tree and Sophora angustifolia and Juyom tea (honey locust, Gleditesia japonica), thus contributing to the anti-smoking promotion.
The DPRK government signed the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control on May 17 2003 and officially acceded to the Convention on April 27 2005. It is now strengthening its international cooperation in the field of tobacco control.
The DPRK government will always place the lives and health of the people as the top national priority and continue to implement its unique and innovative anti-smoking policy, in the future, too, so that its people would enjoy a civilized life to the full, while carrying out their responsibilities and duties as befit masters of the state and society in good health.
PROVIDED TO THE PYONGYANG TIMES