VATICAN CITY – Pope Francis has ordered a ban on the sale of cigarettes contained in the Vatican from subsequent yr due to well being considerations, a spokesman mentioned on Thursday.
“The motive could be very easy: the Holy See can’t be cooperating with a apply that’s clearly harming the well being of individuals,” spokesman Greg Burke mentioned in a press release.
He cited World World Well being Group (WHO) statistics that smoking causes greater than seven million deaths worldwide yearly.
Cigarettes have been offered at a reduced value to Vatican staff and pensioners.
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Vatican staff are allowed to purchase 5 cartons of cigarettes a month. Many Italians ask their non-smoking associates who work within the Vatican to purchase cigarettes for them as a result of they price a lot lower than in Italy, the place they’re topic to heavy taxes.
Burke acknowledged that the sale of cigarettes has been a income for the Holy See, including, “Nevertheless, no revenue might be reliable whether it is costing individuals their lives.”
The spokesman mentioned the sale of enormous cigars would proceed at the very least in the meanwhile as a result of the smoke shouldn’t be inhaled.
The Vatican, a tiny walled city-state surrounded by Rome, is without doubt one of the few states to ban smoking. Bhutan, the place smoking is deemed unhealthy for one’s karma, banned the sale of tobacco in 2005.