129 public health experts from 31 countries have signed a letter to Margaret Chan, WHO director-general, urging new controls on e-cigarettes and warning the devices could be a way for the tobacco industry to skirt existing measures on traditional tobacco products. The experts worry that if advertising is allowed, the devices will become normative and public smoking bans will be marginalized. “By moving into the e-cigarette market, the tobacco industry is only maintaining its predatory practices and increasing profits,” the letter states.
The appeal takes a radically different approach from a May 26 letter. That note from more than 50 scientists and experts sought to persuade Chan that e-cigs should been seen as part of the solution to tobacco – not part of the problem.