Two lung specialists have launched a website listing the names and jobs of people it says work for the tobacco industry lobby in the Netherlands.
The list on tabaknee.nl also includes health minister Edith Schippers, whom it describes as the ‘minister of tobacco employers’, as well as several other prominent politicians.
Schippers, an ex-smoker, relaxed the ban on smoking in small bars and cafes and reduced funding for anti-smoking measures. She has since handed over responsibility for smoking policy to her deputy.
The website is the initiative of a foundation set up to stop youngsters picking up the habit. The foundation Stichting Rookpreventie Jeugd has the slogan ‘smoking kills, government do something’.
The two doctors argue that information about the dangers of smoking does not help as long as the tobacco lobby remains active behind the scenes.
‘We want to show people who the tobacco lobbyists are and make sure they feel guilty rather than the smokers with lung diseases,’ website founder Wanda de Kanter told the paper.
Christian Democrat senator Hans Hillen, listed on the site as a former tobacco industry adviser, told the AD he is neutral about smoking and accused the makers of the website of ‘hypocritical fanaticism’.
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