Number of smokers draws close to one billion

Substantial population growth is blamed for the increasing number of smokers

Chinese officials banned from smoking in public as Beijing moves to curb dirty habits

China is the world's largest manufacturer and consumer of tobacco

Researchers concluded that while there is still a strong association between smoking and lung cancer, there is no significant relationship between the cancer and exposure to passive smoke

Study finds no clear link between lung cancer and second-hand smoke

There is "no clear link" between secondhand smoke and lung cancer, a study led by researchers at Stanford University has found.

Nigella Lawson 'let the children smoke weed', former PA tells court in Saatchi fraud trial

Nigella 'used drugs every three days at family home'

Review: 'Demons: our changing attitudes to alcohol, tobacco and drugs', By Virginia Berridge (Oxford University Press, £16.99)

A table published in the Lancet in 2007 ranked substances for harmfulness, and it made headlines when it placed alcohol ahead of crack cocaine and ketamine (“Special K”, to those who enjoy administering a horse tranquiliser on themselves). Tobacco was judged to be worse than cannabis, glue and solvents, LSD and ecstasy. Bar-room philosophers all over the land almost spilled their pints at the notion that they were hard-drug users.

Tobacco manufacturers have been accused of producing packaging aimed at attracting young smokers

Equivalent of 20 classrooms-full of children take up smoking every day in UK, according to research

At current rates, half of these children will die because of their habit if they carry on smoking

The VIP e-cigarette advert shows a young woman suggestively speaking into the camera

‘Put it in my mouth’: Viewers outraged by apparent reference to oral sex in VIP e-cig advert

The advertising watchdog received a 'significant number' of complaints after the advert was aired during I’m a Celebrity

Government plans to curb smoking are not only wasteful but unworkable

I am quite a keen smoker who has always prized myself on being rather good at it

Ashes in my Mouth, Sand in my Shoes, By Per Petterson, Translated by Don Bartlett - Review

This is a small book that packs a punch. Arvid Jansen lives with his mother, father and sister, Gry, in early-1960s Sweden in the shadow of the Cold War – his Uncle Rolf hates communists. The family is poor, Dad is a factory worker and they live in a leaky tower block. Arvid is a frail, hyper-sensitive child who stays in bed for four days when told that nuclear war may end the world. His imaginative neuroses determine his actions – he smashes the clock to release the caged tiger because he can’t bear his mother ageing and, for him, six-and-a-half is “enough”.

Labour would make it illegal to buy cigarettes for children

Buying cigarettes on behalf of under-18s would be made illegal under plans by Labour unveiled this week.

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: And now a word from our sponsors – spin included

Since the advertising ban, the tobacco industry has had to rely on product placement in unexpected contexts, like the House of Commons. “I confess that I enjoyed a Henri Wintermans Café Crème after breakfast this morning on the way to work,” Tory MP Robert Halfon announced, arguing that plain packaging might make it “easier to smuggle counterfeit cigarettes”.

David Cameron postponed plans to introduce plain packaging on cigarettes earlier this year

Never mind government U-turns, the decision on plain packaging for cigarettes is the right one

Evidence from Australia indicates that uniform packs leave addicts likelier to consider kicking the habit

A smoking ban on NHS hospital grounds is a good idea. It's the last thing patients - and staff - should be doing

Removing smoking will encourage an out-of-sight-out-of-mind cultural shift

The Government has insisted it has no plans to introduce plain cigarette packaging

Time for local authorities to kick the habit and ditch their investments in the tobacco industry

It's hugely hypocritical to tell smokers to quit while making money from them

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