April 2, 2019
by Forest EU

Forest EU reacts to calls for the prohibition of tobacco and vaping products

In March 2019, the Brussels-based tobacco-control lobby ENSP organised two events in Romania where worrying statements were made by both organisers and speakers.

BRUSSELS, 2 April 2019 – On 26-29 March, the Brussels-based tobacco-control lobby ENSP organised two events in Romania where worrying statements were made by both organisers and speakers.

Guillaume Périgois, director of the smokers’ campaign Forest EU, said:

“These self-justifying events were being promoted by agitating the idea of an outright tobacco prohibition in the name of human rights. Moreover, the head of ENSP compared smoking to slavery and a speaker allegedly mentioned ‘having sex with a 2 years old’ in a remark about tobacco. This should alert anybody to the tobacco-control campaign’s misdirection. The general public already jumped off the radicalisation train with 56% of Europeans thinking that anti-tobacco regulations have gone far enough, according to a Populus 2018 survey.”

“The ideological bubble in which the anti-tobacco campaign now exists is most visible when the head of Commissioner Vytenis Andriukaitis’ cabinet is comparing electronic cigarettes to poison, when the Commissioner himself, after declaring that ‘Harm is harm. No matter if it’s less or more.’, is pushing for electronic cigarettes and other alternative products to be sold only in pharmacies and when the head of secretariat of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) argues that governments should prohibit these products despite the fact that they have helped hundreds of thousands of people to quit smoking.”

“All this reflects a true disrespect for smokers, vapers and the general public and, more worryingly, the misguided direction of our public health policies which are beginning to put ideology before the potential reduction of health risks.”

On 26 March 2019, a Global Forum on Human Rights and a Tobacco-Free World was organised in Romania by the European Network for Smoking and Tobacco Prevention (ENSP) and the American tobacco-control group ASH with the participation of Commissioner Vytenis Andriukaitis. In addition, on 27-29 March, the ENSP organised its 4th International Conference on Tobacco Control.


Note to editors:

  • For more information, please contact Forest EU Director Guillaume Périgois on +32 4 78 98 07 43 or at gp@forestonline.eu.
  • Forest EU is a lobby campaign informing smokers about issues that affect them in the European Union and engaging with stakeholders so the views of informed adults are taken into account within the EU’s decision-making process. Since 1979, Forest has been the leading voice in defending the rights of tobacco consumers and tolerant non-smokers. Forest EU doesn’t encourage smoking and doesn’t represent the tobacco industry. For more information, visit forestonline.eu.

Featured image: ‘Bucharestby Aleksandr Osipov is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.


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