Kiev: The Ukrainian parliament has approved a legislation prohibiting smoking at public places, including restaurants, stadiums and government buildings.
"The adoption of this document was necessary since, according to statistics, 11 million Ukrainians are addicted to smoking as well as, unfortunately, every fourth child from 12 to 16," Tatyana Bakhteyeva, the initiator of the law, said.
According to the law, smoking cigarettes, electronic cigarettes and hookahs are prohibited in health care services, playgrounds, stadiums, elevators, phone booths, on public transport, in cafes, restaurants, and cultural facilities.
The legislation sets up to $1,250 penalty and was supported by over 80 percent of Ukrainians, Bakhteyeva said. It will come into force in six months after being published.
Over 10 EU countries have already officially introduced smoking bans. The number of heart attacks fell by 17 percent a year after banning public smoking.
Russia is the number one tobacco consumer in the world, according to the Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS). Some 44 million Russians smoke, or approximately 40 percent of the population.