Drinking ban rejected

Russian council turns down bill restricting public consumption

Nov 10, 2004 - Russia's Federation Council turned down a bill that would have restricted the sale and consumption of beer as an alcoholic beverage. After passing the lower house of pariament the measure was expected to be whisked into law.


The bill would have banned the sale of beer near children's facilities and the consumption of beer in public places.

A special group has been appointed to revise the bill, after which the senate may look at it again, a presidential representative in the senate said. Senators said they feared that the new law would be ineffective, and that teenagers would still continue drinking beer in stairwells and basements. They also feared that the bill would give rise to illegal sale of beer.

A bill banning beer commercials between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. came into effect earlier this year. A ban on the use of people and animals in beer ads will come into effect next year.

Public beer drinking in Russia is widespread. The country's vodka habit means many don't consider beer an alcoholic drink and Muscovites can often be seen with a bottle on their way to work in the morning.

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