"There are nearly 70 million smokers in Russia. It is practically one half of the entire Russian population," stated Director of the Carcinogenetic Research Institute David Zaridze in his interview with the radio station "Echo of Moscow." According to him, "this is the highest number in the world." Unlike Europe or the United States, Russian figures do not decrease, but tend to increase rapidly," added Zaridze.
The scientist has also mentioned that "smoking is a serious factor in the high death rate in our country." "If Russians quit smoking, the entire death rate will be reduced by 300,000 people annually," stated Zaridze.
"Every second smoker dies as a result of smoking related illnesses." Zaridze also added that smoking increases the risk of a person to develop cancer, chronic lung illnesses as well as various heart-related problems. According to Zaridze, "majority of people is capable to quit smoking simply by means of strengthening their own will." It is also way easier for a person with psychological smoking dependency to quit smoking rather than for a person with pharmacological dependency. The scientist also pointed out the fact that present day mass media does not devote enough attention to such important problem as smoking. There should be more anti smoking campaigns in order to persuade people and make them aware of all the negative consequences of smoking.
Zaridze reminded that "a special law forbidding smoking in public places has been adopted about half a year ago in Russia." Unfortunately, the law does not seem to have any effect, remarked Zaridze. Carcinogenic substances exude as a result of coal, oil and tobacco burning. The Carcinogenetic Research Institute is currently conducting special monitoring of carcinogenic particles in the air. Scientists are working in Moscow and in various regions throughout the Russian Federation. Moscow's Southern and South-Eastern districts are the most inauspicious so far.