Jordan records 8,000 annual deaths linked to smoking


Published: 2023-07-15 17:18

Last Updated: 2024-07-14 17:44

Jordan records 8,000 annual deaths linked to smoking
Jordan records 8,000 annual deaths linked to smoking

Despite mounting concerns and health warnings, smoking continues to exact a devastating toll on the Kingdom of Jordan, with an alarming 8,000 lives lost each year. Shockingly, the prevalence of smokers in Jordan stands at an alarming rate of approximately 41 percent.

Bassam Al-Hijjawi, the head of the Jordanian National Anti-Smoking Society, revealed that Jordan is among the nations worldwide burdened with the highest smoking rates. The World Health Organization (WHO) has classified smoking as an "epidemic," underlining the urgency of addressing this pressing issue.

The pervasive problem encompasses both traditional cigarettes and the increasingly popular electronic cigarettes, which have evolved into a global concern reaching beyond the borders of Jordan.

Al-Hijjawi passionately advocates for stricter measures and more severe penalties to combat the pervasive smoking culture prevailing in the Kingdom. He emphasized that 10 percent of Jordanian smokers opt for electronic cigarettes, predominantly observed among young adults.

Highlighting the gravity of the situation, Al-Hijjawi warned that smoking for a duration of 10 to 15 years exposes individuals to the grave risk of chronic diseases and even premature death.

Adding to the complexity of the issue is the prevalence of shisha, a popular social activity in Jordan. Hijjawi lamented that the shisha phenomenon poses a more significant challenge in Jordan compared to many other countries, with over 3,000 shisha-serving cafes operating across the nation.

The distressing reality of widespread smoking can be attributed, in part, to the stressful living conditions experienced by citizens amidst soaring unemployment rates and a surge in poverty, as revealed in a recent opinion poll.

As the battle against smoking-related deaths intensifies, urgent action is required to curtail this public health crisis in Jordan. With concerted efforts and comprehensive measures, the Kingdom aims to safeguard its citizens and build a healthier, smoke-free future for all.