28/02/2019, Dublin, Ireland – ASH Ireland, Council of the Irish Heart Foundation welcomes the World Health Organization (WHO)’s position to reject working with the Phillip Morris International (PMI)-funded Foundation for a Smoke-Free World (FSFW). WHO’s statement follows FSFW’s recent outreach to the WHO Executive Board (WHO EB) regarding potential partnerships.
Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General of the WHO, said at the 144th Session of the WHO EB that WHO remains committed to the full implementation of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC), a global treaty mandating states to, among others, protect their governments from interference by the tobacco industry.
ASH Ireland, Council of the Irish Heart Foundation is also calling on governments and researchers to reject funding from entities funded by the tobacco industry like FSFW. “We join the WHO in calling on governments and research institutions to shun any prospect of receiving support or research funding from the tobacco industry as well as from those furthering its interests. FSFW is entirely funded by PMI which continues to earn billions at the expense of those who fall prey to tobacco addiction. Our concern is that FSFW effectively operationalizes PMI’s corporate affairs strategy to further PMI’s business interests which include the promotion of its heated tobacco products, a market which PMI seeks to dominate,” said Dr. Patrick Doorley, Chairperson of ASH Ireland, Council of the Irish Heart Foundation
The WHO FCTC, the world’s first global health treaty, states: “In setting and implementing their public health policies with respect to tobacco control, Parties shall act to protect these policies from commercial and other vested interests of the tobacco industry in accordance with national law.”
Stopping Tobacco Organizations and Products (STOP), a global tobacco industry watchdog, initiated an open letter supported by over 300 organizations and experts to challenge FSFW’s move to reverse WHO’s 2017 warning that governments and the public health community should not partner with FSFW.
On February 6, STOP welcomed WHO’s reiteration of its position and “urged researchers and governments currently being approached by FSFW to also recognize that FSFW has no place, either in public health science or at the policy table.”
Irish Heart Foundation
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