The World Health Organization has warned that a full nargileh is equivalent to smoking 20 to 30 cigarettes at once.
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Nasreddine is among many regular smokers who are displeased with a government decision to impose a new tax on water pipes as part of a larger austerity package.For some, the new levy on water pipes has provoked particular ire.In much of the Middle East, sharing a water pipe -- also called shisha or hookah -- is often conceived as a social occasion during which smokers spend hours in cafes chatting and passing the hose around.Lebanon has the highest rate of shisha smokers in the region among teenagers, according to a 2016 study in the medical journal Ethnicity & Disease, which found that roughly a third of 13- to 15-year-olds it surveyed had smoked at least once in the past month. The 24-year-old technician says the shisha tax is not the only problem.
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