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According to the European Commission, tobacco consumption is considered the largest avoidable health risk and the most significant cause of premature death in the EU. Approximately 700,000 deaths every year are attributed to tobacco, while around 50% of smokers die prematurely.
Last year, the EU set new strict anti-tobacco rules; however, their impact is still to be seen.
Member states should prioritise laws that protect public health because there is little value in having them if they are not enforced, the EU's health Commissioner told EURACTIV.com in an interview.
Anti-smoking campaigners heavily criticised the Greek government for not implementing a 2008 law that prohibits smoking in public places. EURACTIV.com reports from Athens.
What would the world be like if tobacco control NGOs did not exist? What kind of society would we live in? How would our lives be different if the tobacco industry had its way?
Anti-tobacco campaigners from across Europe today (31 May) called on their national governments to use the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals to drive forward tobacco control legislation.