(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis is putting a stop to the sale of cigarettes and tobacco inside Vatican City State.
A statement released on Thursday by Greg Burke, Director of the Holy See Press Office, explained that the Holy See “cannot be cooperating with a practice that is clearly harming the health of people.”
Citing the World World Health Organization statistics that smoking causes more than seven million deaths worldwide every year, he said cigarettes will not be sold at the Vatican as from the beginning of next year.
Burke acknowledged that the sale of cigarettes has been a source of revenue for the Holy See, but he said “no profit can be legitimate if it is costing people their lives.”
“Although the cigarettes sold to employees and pensioners in the Vatican at a reduced price are a source of revenue for the Holy See, no profit can be legitimate if it puts lives at risk” the statement said.
He added that the sale of large cigars would continue for the time being because the smoke is not inhaled.