'Stop vaping until official study'

KUALA LUMPUR - The authorities are calling on the public to voluntarily stop vaping and using e-cigarettes until an official study on the effects is out in two months.

National Fatwa Council chairman Tan Sri Prof Abdul Shukor Husin said if vaping was found to be as harmful as smoking shisha or cigarettes, it should be stopped based on Islamic principles.

"Until the results are released, I advise vapers to stop it for the time being," he told mStar.

Dr Abdul Shukor also clarified that the council did not declare vaping haram, as reported by several news agencies yesterday.

"This matter hasn't been brought to the National Fatwa Council yet. I did not say that e-cigarettes are haram.

"What we decided long ago was that cigarettes and sisha are haram."

Separately, the Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) wants the usage of e-cigarettes, including vaping devices, to be regulated.

Its president Dr Ashok Philip said by having some sort of regulation, it could be the first step towards enforcing a total ban on the devices.

"Currently, there are no regulations on these harmful devices. I hope the ministry will do something about it.

"I also personally hope people will stop smoking because it is harmful," Dr Ashok said, adding that MMA had relayed the proposal to the Health Ministry.

On Aug 13, Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam said the ministry was in discussions with various agencies and related parties on the effects the various methods of smoking have on the health.

He urged the public to stop vaping until comprehensive findings on the risks are released.