Tobacco will kill nearly six million people this year, including 600,000 non-smokers, because governments are not doing enough to persuade people to quit or protect others from second-hand smoke, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Tuesday.
Since there is often a lag of many years between when people start smoking and when it affects health, the epidemic of tobacco-related disease and death has just begun, the WHO said. But by 2030, the annual death toll could reach 8 million,
Tobacco use is the second leading cause of death globally, after hypertension. This year more than 5 million will die from a tobacco-related heart attack, stroke or lung ailment. The good news is that this epidemic is preventable,
Smoking is widely popular in Russia, where lighting up is a normal occurrence at most workplaces, restaurants, and public gatherings, despite longstanding government bans. Male smokers typically outnumber female smokers by around two to one,