Bangkok, Thailand hosted the second session of Conference of the Parties to the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) June 30-July 6. Since Russia has not yet joined the convention, but plans to do so in the near future, it attended the session as an observer.

Among other things, officials from the Parties to the Convention discussed financial assistance for tobacco control measures in developing nations and the possible introduction of tobacco alternatives. The WHO FCTC was established on February 27, 2005 and currently has 148 member states.

The WHO says on its Web site that by 2030 70% of deaths attributable to tobacco will occur in the developing world, while tobacco generally kills half of regular users. It is estimated that up to 700 people die every day in Russia from smoking-related illnesses. (