Police launched an island-wide campaign on Friday to clamp down on the illegal sale of tobacco to minors on the occasion of World No Tobacco Day, which is marked every year on May 31.
The 24-hour campaign will end on 7am on Saturday with the focus on areas frequented by youngsters. People must be 18 or over to buy tobacco.
World No Smoking Day is an effort by the World Health Organisation (WHO) to make the public aware of the negative effects of smoking on health.
According to WHO data, smoking kills nearly six million people every year, of whom 600,000 are passive smokers.
The focus of World No Tobacco Day 2019 is on ‘tobacco and lung health’. The campaign will increase awareness on the negative impact that tobacco has on people’s lung health, from cancer to chronic respiratory disease, and the fundamental role lungs play for health and well-being.
According to a study by Eurostat published to mark the day, tobacco consumption is one of the greatest avoidable health risks in the European Union. Many forms of cancer and cardiovascular and respiratory disease are linked to tobacco use.
In the 26 EU member states for which data are available for 2016, around a quarter of all deaths reported were due to cancer. Lung cancer accounted for 21 per cent of all cancer-related deaths.
In 2016, the share of lung cancer among all fatal cancers was highest in Hungary (27 per cent), followed by Poland, Greece and the Netherlands (all 24 per cent).
For Cyprus the number is 20 percent, close to the EU average.