May 25, 2011 11:02
Starting next month people caught smoking in Seoul's Gwanghwamun Plaza, Cheonggye Stream or Seoul Plaza will be fined W100,000 (US$1=W1,094).
The city council passed an ordinance last year to better protect non-smokers from secondhand smoke and has conducted a three-month campaign since March to raise public awareness.
Non-smokers are embracing the new ban at these popular locations. The move is in line with those of other major cities around the world that have banned smoking in public areas. Authorities will patrol the area from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and violators will be fined immediately.
The Seoul Metropolitan Government will expand non-smoking zones to bus stops, parks and school zones around the city by next year.
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