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    Paris bans smoking in 52 parks and gardens

    Anyone found violating the ban, which came into effect on Friday, 31 May, faces a fine of 38 euros. Credit: Belga

    Smoking has been banned in 52 parks and public gardens in Paris, in a move that, the mayor’s office hopes, will make the city “an even more welcoming capital”.

    Anyone found violating the ban, which came into effect on Friday, 31 May, faces a fine of 38 euros.

    The new no-smoking zones represent about 10% of the green spaces in Paris. However, the ban does not apply to the city’s biggest parks, popular with picnickers and revellers in the summer.

    The level of cigarette smoking is slightly higher in France than in the rest of the European Union, according to EU statistics, and much higher than in most other European countries.

    French Health Ministry statistics show that the number of habitual smokers has dropped by 1.6 million since 2016 and now represents 25.4% of the population.

    However, the mortality rate among women for smoking-related illnesses continues to rise by 5% each year as a result of increases in the number of female smokers between the 1970s and 1990s.

    Oscar Schneider
    The Brussels Times