Turkey, which already bans tobacco smoking in enclosed public places, plans to impose further restrictions on where its citizens may smoke, according to a Daily Sabah story.
Existing legislation bans smoking in restaurants and cafés but, up to now, people have been allowed to smoke in outdoor areas of such premises.
Now, under new measures to be brought in under the Ministry of Health’s 2014-18 tobacco control program, restaurant and café owners will have to set up separate outdoor areas for smokers and non-smokers.
The ministry will ban smoking also within a stipulated distance of the entrance to premises where smoking is prohibited.
And it will ban smoking from some outdoor areas open to the public, including playgrounds and the courtyards of schools and mosques.
Under the new control program, smoking, which is already banned on public transportation, will be prohibited in private vehicles carrying pregnant women or children.
The ministry has promised to make more frequent the inspections of tobacco outlets, so as to crack down on sales to people under the age of 18, and it will introduce a ban on cigarette sales in shops in ‘close proximity’ to schools.
The Minister of Health Mehmet Müezzinoğlu was quoted as saying the regulations would be adopted ‘as soon as possible’.
“Cigarette is the first step to bad habits for most consumers of alcoholic beverages and drug users,” he said. “So, we aim to curb smoking rates first.”