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Last Updated: Wednesday, 8 September, 2004, 05:47 GMT 06:47 UK
Lobby advocates choice on smoking
Cigarette over ashtray
A decision on the ban will be announced before Christmas
A campaign has been launched to fight any moves to ban smoking in public places in Scotland.

Freedom2Choose, which announced details of its plan at the Doublet Bar in Glasgow on Wednesday, said a ban could be "potentially ruinous".

It believes there are a number of businesses, including pubs, which are against the possible policy change.

The campaign comes in the wake of the strongest hint yet that the Scottish Executive will introduce a ban.

Lessons to learn

During a visit to Ireland, where smoking has been banned in public places, First Minister Jack McConnell said he could see the policy's overwhelming popularity and the high level of compliance.

He said there were "lessons for us to learn" but he could see the policy working out.

The public is currently being consulted on a possible smoking ban in Scotland.

An announcement from the executive is expected before Christmas.

Smoking remains the biggest cause of preventable premature death and ill health and there is mounting evidence of the health risks of passive smoking.

Experts argue that 30 minutes' exposure is enough to reduce blood flow to the heart.




SEE ALSO:
Scotland smoking ban 'workable'
01 Sep 04  |  Scotland
Strong move towards smoking ban
31 Aug 04  |  Scotland
Pub smoking ban 'may cost jobs'
29 Aug 04  |  Scotland
Smoking debate hears north views
10 Aug 04  |  Scotland
Galbraith calls for smoking ban
11 Jul 04  |  Scotland


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