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Three coffee shops closed for violating smoking ban

By JT - Apr 14,2015 - Last updated at Apr 14,2015

AMMAN — Authorities closed three coffee shops during the first quarter of 2015 for violating the Public Health Law, which bans smoking in public places, and referred their owners to court, an official said Tuesday.

Fatima Khalifah, head of the Health Ministry’s tobacco control department, said liaison officers also issued fines against 21 institutions during field visits to ensure the enforcement of the Public Health Law, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.

She added that these institutions included restaurants, coffee shops, hotels, tobacco stores, car rental offices and toy shops.

During the same period, the ministry issued 39 warnings for restaurants, coffee shops and tobacco stores, Petra quoted Khalifa as saying.

She also noted that the ministry issued 1,100 fines and 300 warnings to individuals and institutions, and closed 15 facilities in 2014, Petra reported.

The Public Heath Law, passed in 2008, was enforced in the Kingdom’s shopping malls and Queen Alia International Airport in March 2009, and in fast-food restaurants in June of that year.

A Cabinet decision prohibiting smoking in ministries and public institutions went into force on May 25, 2010.

According to the law, smoking is prohibited in public places, which include hospitals, healthcare centres, schools, cinemas, theatres, libraries, museums, public and non-governmental buildings, public transport vehicles, airports, closed playgrounds, lecture halls and any other location to be determined by the health minister.

Any person caught smoking in a public place is subject to between one week and one month imprisonment or a JD15-JD25 fine. The same penalties apply to those who sell cigarettes to minors.

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