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Experts have called for a ‘turbocharged’ campaign to rid the world of tobacco by 2040

Could the world be smoke-free by 2040? ‘Turbocharged’ global campaign to ban the sale of tobacco could save one billion lives, experts say .Sale of tobacco should be phased out in the next 25 years, experts say .Claim one billion deaths could be averted by the end of the century .United Nations should take a lead role in the ‘turbocharged’ campaign

By Lizzie Parry for MailOnline

Leading experts have called for a ‘turbocharged’ global campaign to make the world tobacco free by 2040.

The sale of tobacco should be phased out within the next 25 years, leading public health researchers have today said.

They claim one billion deaths from smoking could be averted by the end of the century, if action is taken now.

But a global campaign will only work with the support of governments as well as with stronger evidence-based action against the tobacco industry, they warn.

Professors Robert Beaglehole and Ruth Bonita, from the University of Auckland in New Zealand have called on the United Nations to lead efforts against the sale and consumption of tobacco.

They warn that despite the decline of smoking in the developed world, tobacco use is expected to increase in some countries over the next decade, notably in Africa and the Middle East.

With global population rising, there could still be more than a billion people smoking in 2025 unless urgent action is taken, it is claimed.

The call to arms in the fight against smoking comes in a series of articles published in the Lancet medical journal and will be launched at the World Conference on Tobacco and Health being held in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

Professor Beaglehole, said: ‘The time has come for the world to acknowledge the unacceptability of the damage being done by the tobacco industry and work towards a world essentially free from the legal and illegal sale of tobacco products.

‘A world where tobacco is out of sight, out of mind, and out of fashion – yet not prohibited – is achievable in less than three decades from now, but only with full commitment from governments, international agencies, such as UN and WHO (World Health Organisation), and civil society.

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