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  1. monkey
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3824515.stm

    By Jim Muir
    BBC correspondent in Tehran

    Young Iranians have taken to gathering around the qalyoun to smoke and flirt

    Iranian officials have said that smoking the hubble-bubble, or water-pipe, will be banned in all restaurants and leisure places from Monday.

    The water-pipe is one of the most traditional instruments of relaxation and indulgence in the Middle East.

    In Iran, where it is known as the qalyoun, it has been at the centre of traditional culture for centuries.

    Fines and confiscation

    The sweet scent of fruit-flavoured tobacco wafting around restaurants and teahouses is a familiar part of any scene of public relaxation in Tehran. But not for long - if the authorities have their way.

    Police and public health officials will now be out and about making sure that this latest clampdown on public pleasure is fully applied.

    Restaurant owners and people caught smoking the qalyoun on their premises or in public places will be liable to fines and confiscation of the offending items.

    For a transitional period only, private rooms may be set aside for men only to indulge their habit.

    'Social corruption'

    It is not clear quite why this highly popular, traditional and seemingly innocent pastime is being suppressed.

    Officially, it is to do with health - but cigarette smoking is still permitted in restaurants and elsewhere - and is generally regarded as much more harmful. With the water-pipe, the smoker does not inhale any tar.

    The move comes amid preparations for a broader summer crackdown on what hardline officials here call "social corruption".

    This includes poor observance of Islamic dress codes and public morals, parties involving alcohol and the mingling of unmarried people from both sexes.
    It is in this context that most people are bound to see the move to oust the hubble-bubble from public sight and scent, especially since young people have recently taken increasingly to gathering around the qalyoun to smoke and flirt.

    It remains to be seen how successful the drive will be in such a big country where the practice is so widespread.

    Qalyoun vendors complain that their sales have already been plummeting.

    But it is not illegal to sell the pipes or to use them at home, so the indulgence is certain at least to be kept alive where most Iranians have their real fun nowadays - behind closed doors.

Comments

  1. searcher
    Nice to see the government there is concerned about citizens health. I prefered smoking hash out of a hooka and not flavored tobacco. I wonder if the smoke shops around here sell flavored Iranian tobacco, never smoked that...sounds interesting.. I wonder what the flavors are.. sounds interesting. Qalyoun?
  2. Psilocybe S.
    Okay I thought the whole time I saw those arabs smoking out of hookas, they were smoking hash. But flavored tobacco? how gay.
  3. iranian
    hi guys I'm prou to here my country name in here. but let me tel you the real story:
    we have some places in iran wich is called "Ghave Khane" it means "cofee house"
    in 300 years ago it was like a cofee shop and served cofee an hookah. today they only serve hooka.
    our government bans resturants and leisure places but our "Ghave Khane" is still alowed to serve hookah.
    oh some thing else FUCK BBC! they not always tell the truth
    but fuck the government they dont do any thing right! now resturants again serve hookah! belive me iran is the strangest place on planet where laws are changed every day.
    and I tell you this flavored tobacco is a great thing to use! it is so much fun and many teenagers in iran smoke it.
    try that it is realy goo
  4. Spare Chaynge
  5. Mammon
    I have smoked flavoured tobacco from one of those things at uni - it was apple flavoured and delicious, really so much nicer than a rolly.
  6. cra$h
    iran banning hookahs is like Ireland banning alcohol. It just isn't going to work.
  7. iranian
    yeaaaaah dude. the government never do ANYTHING right in iran. lol!
  8. enquirewithin
    The smoke from a hookah probably contains very large amounts of carcinogens compared to filtered tobacco. Flavouring will make more not less toxic.

    "...it [flavoured tobacco] is so much fun and many teenagers in iran smoke it." Targeting young people is not good. Big tobacco companies have thought of the same thing.

    ("FUCK BBC! they not always tell the truth..." Very true! I wish more Brits knew that too.)
  9. iranian
    yeah dude I know it is bad but it is fun! and you are not in my country to feel how difficult it is to have fun.
    alcohol is illigal here!
    sex is illigal here!
    dancing is illigal here!
    fuck this government...

    iranian added 4 Minutes and 6 Seconds later...

    oh and another thing fucking with the government is illigal here too!
    and thats because many of our youth get addicted to some horrible stuff. like crack heroin. do you know this? I think it is originaly made in iran. and oh my god it is Horrible

    iranian added 0 Minutes and 29 Seconds later...

    oh and another thing fucking with the government is illigal here too!
    and thats because many of our youth get addicted to some horrible stuff. like crack heroin. do you know this? I think it is originaly made in iran. and oh my god it is Horrible

    iranian added 0 Minutes and 25 Seconds later...

    oh and another thing fucking with the government is illigal here too!
    and thats because many of our youth get addicted to some horrible stuff. like crack heroin. do you know this? I think it is originaly made in iran. and oh my god it is Horrible

    iranian added 1 Minutes and 18 Seconds later...

    oh and another thing fucking with the government is illigal here too!
    and thats because many of our youth get addicted to some horrible stuff. like crack heroin. do you know this? I think it is originaly made in iran. and oh my god it is Horrible

    iranian added 3 Minutes and 2 Seconds later...

    oh and another thing fucking with the government is illigal here too!
    and thats because many of our youth get addicted to some horrible stuff. like crack heroin. do you know this? I think it is originaly made in iran. and oh my god it is Horrible
  10. enquirewithin
    :) All our governments are bad to some extent. The heroin comes from Afghanistan, courtesy of the US invasion. If the West stopped threatening Iran, you might have some chance of getting a better government.
  11. cra$h
    what's America threatening iran with? The only thing I'm aware of is the whole nuke thing
  12. enquirewithin
    I think threatening to bomb them is a fairly substantial threat, especially when they every right to nuclear power anyway. The US is said to be funding terrorist groups within Iran to try to destabilize the country. The US is attacking Iran's economy through sanctions and wants to threaten more, except it has now alienated Russia too. At the same time it supplies weapons to a highly dangerous unstable state in the Middle East, Israel, whose leaders are all warmongers and who possess an unknown number of nuclear warheads. They have invaded the country next to Iran.

    The list goes on...
  13. cra$h
    figgured it went pretty deep, but the details sound unclear. Sounds a lot like the Afghan-Soviet war of the 80's.
  14. enquirewithin
    The US/ NATO war in Afghanistan is very much like the Soviet one and doomed to a similar failure.
  15. Spare Chaynge
    The soviets were defeated mainly by united states dollars weapons and training. The failure of the UN will be different.
  16. enquirewithin
    Maybe, or perhaps somewhat similar, because although the US funded the Mujahadin, from which came the Taleban, it's still similar groups fighting NATO (not the UN), ie. the US. This time the $ seem to be comng from opium production. Reasons why the Afghanis are fighting the US and allies include a total lack of security and the US's air attacks on innocent people.
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