Please pray for effective implementation of a ban on advertising tobacco products that was passed this week in the Israeli parliament. Tobacco products will now be required to be packaged in a muddy brown color with a yellowish tint, which was found scientifically to be the least attractive color in the world, a requirement already mandated in Australia since 2016 aimed at diminishing the appearance of the items. All tobacco products will also be required to say “Warning—this product is very addictive and harmful to your health,” and “Warning—smoking causes serious diseases and premature death.” The express purpose of this law that is aims “to reduce the public’s exposure to smoking products” and is intended “to protect non-smokers, especially young people and former smokers, from the effects of advertising, including those that create a positive image of smoking products.” According to Israel’s Ministry of Health, approximately 8,000 Israelis die every year due to smoking-related causes, including 800 non-smokers exposed to secondhand smoke, which makes smoking one of Israel’s leading causes of death. Studies indicate that Israel’s smoking rate fell from about 45 percent in the early 1980s to about 20 percent or less in the years since 2011, but has since risen to 22.5 percent as of 2016.
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