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    Russian Church council calls for restriction on alcohol sales

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    An international public forum, the 13th World Russian People's Council, has called for a ban on alcohol being sold in kiosks with sales restricted to shops only.

    MOSCOW, May 25 (RIA Novosti) - An international public forum, the 13th World Russian People's Council, has called for a ban on alcohol being sold in kiosks with sales restricted to shops only.

    "We propose a total ban on the sale of alcoholic drinks, including beer, from kiosks, where any teenager can agree with the sales assistant about anything," a council participant, Archimandrite Tikhon, father superior of Moscow's Sretensky Monastery, said.

    The Council is an international public and church organization and forum aimed at raising public awareness to some of the most pressing issues affecting society. It has gathered since 1993, and is led by the Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia.

    Over 10,000 people, including representatives from Russia's traditional religions, authorities, public organizations, businesspeople, scientific and cultural figures, students and delegates of Russian communities from abroad met at the annual forum on May 21-23.

    Russia's chief sanitary doctor Gennady Onishchenko, who also participated, said: "The chief task we have today is to tear young people away [from alcoholism]."

    The Council also called for an increase in fines for those that sell alcohol to teenagers and to ban the production and sale of low-alcohol cocktails also known as alcopops.

    According to the World Health Organization, 8 liters of alcohol is the maximum amount a person should consume per year. In Russia, according to various sources, the annual level of alcohol consumption is around 14-18 liters per person.

     

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