facebook
twitter
search
search

British squabble delays anti-smoking law

Oct. 26, 2005 at 10:07 AM

LONDON, Oct. 26 (UPI) -- Britain delayed publication of its new anti-smoking law as cabinet members squabbled about specifics of the rules applying to pubs, reports said Wednesday.

Defense Secretary John Reid and Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, both former health secretaries, blocked a stricter law that would have required pubs that do not serve food to allow smoking only in an enclosed room, The Times of London reported.

That left Reid and Straw at odds with current Health Secretary Patricia Hewitt and Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell, who backed the sealed-room plan.

The dispute dismayed anti-smoking groups.

John Britton of the Royal College of Physicians said a complete public smoking ban would be extremely popular and if the Irish experience is repeated, would cause one in 12 to give up smoking.

"I don't understand why the government doesn't do the obvious and get on with it," Britton told the BBC.

Another former health secretary, Frank Dobson, blamed the dispute on Prime Minister Tony Blair's waning authority, The Financial Times reported.

Like Us on Facebook for more stories from UPI.com  
Latest Headlines
Top Stories
North Korea officials defecting in fear of rising executions
North Korea: Airport terminal is 'new face' of country
Pilot in Taiwan plane crash shut down wrong engine, black boxes show
Compact cannon for British armored vehicles
Texas police body cam video shows fatal shooting