Isis hijacks NHS ad to discourage people from smoking

By Seb Joseph | News editor

November 29, 2015 | 3 min read

Jihadist extremist militant group Isis has “borrowed” NHS anti-smoking adverts in a bid to convince people living under its role to stop smoking.

The terror group, which is currently encamped across Syria and Iraq, has forbidden smoking under a strict interpretation of traditional Islamic law, reports The Independent. An image Isis posted on social media showed the anti-smoking message that would appear to have taken heavy inspiration from a Public Health campaign in 2013.

Despite smoking and the sale of cigarettes being banned in Isis-controlled regions, a lucrative smuggling market has emerged to capitalise on the demand. One in five women and six in ten men smoke in Syria alone, according to statistics, a trend reflective across many Middle Eastern nations. Experts predict that the majority of 10 million fatalities from smoking over the next 10 years will come from developing countries.

It’s not the first time Isis have attempted to curb smoking, with the militant group employing everything from billboards to more extreme measures. Reports have claimed that people caught smoking in places under its rule face instant fines of $65, prison sentences and flogging.


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