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| 20 November, 2017

$544 fine for smoking e-cigarettes in Dubai malls

Image used for illustrative purposes. Martin Borne, co-founder of electronic cigarette retailer "Demain J'arrete", demonstrates the use of an electronic cigarette in his shop in Paris October 8, 2013. REUTERS/Charles Platiau

Image used for illustrative purposes. Martin Borne, co-founder of electronic cigarette retailer "Demain J'arrete", demonstrates the use of an electronic cigarette in his shop in Paris October 8, 2013. REUTERS/Charles Platiau

REUTERS/Charles Platiau

In case of repeat offences, officers inside malls have right to approach police.

Dubai Municipality will impose a fine of Dh2,000 on people smoking electronic cigarettes inside shopping malls, an official said.

Eng. Redha Salman, Director of Public Health and Safety Department, stressed that sales or import of electronic cigarettes is illegal in the UAE under federal law.

Therefore, electronic cigarette smoking is "completely banned" in public places like souks and shopping malls, both indoors and at the entrances of the malls, Salman said.

Smokers of e-cigarettes will be slapped with Dh2,000 fine.

In case of repeat offences, security officers inside malls have the right to approach the police, Salman added.

He added that the municipality conducts continuous inspections at shops selling tobacco, and e-cigarettes are immediately confiscated when found.

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"We take immediate legal action against violating shops that sell electronic cigarettes. The municipality will not allow any violations when it comes to smoking inside closed areas," said Salman.

The decision in 2009 to ban smoking in public places also includes electronic cigarettes and smoking at the entrances of shopping centres and indoor areas like hotels.

Article No. 8 prohibits all kinds of direct and indirect advertising of tobacco and its products.

Salman said the decision of fining violators came after the general notice that some shopping centres allow violation of the indoor smoking ban, especially the electronic cigarettes and smoking at the entrances.

He said that the decision aims to maintain public health and achieve the strategic goals of health in the emirate.

Reporting by Sherouk Zakaria

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