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 An Egyptian Orthodox Christian priest give communion during the Palm Sunday service inCairo, Egypt. Mohamed El-Shahed / AFP

Region in focus - April 18, 2014

The best images of the last seven days from around the Gulf and across the Middle East.

 Above, the private pool of Ocean Heights' five-bedroom penthouse flat. Courtesy Christie’s International Real Estate

In pictures: Penthouse flat is height of Dubai luxury living

A five-bedroom penthouse in Ocean Heights in Dubai Marina is on sale for Dh25 million and comes with a private pool and an unparalleled view of Dubai.

Video: Local reactions to a national fishing ban

A federal fishing ban has been imposed by the UAE federal government, but local authorities are taking diiferent approaches to implementing the ban. Two fishermen tell two very different sides of the story. Produced by Paul O'Driscoll

 Hamburg players leave the field after the match against Borussia Moenchengladbach on March 30, 2014. AFP

Hamburg the dinosaur’s time may be up in Bundesliga

Ever-present for 51 years in the German top-flight, Hamburg face the prospect of relegation, writes Ian Hawkey.

 The new Bentley GT Speed convertible on display at a press event of the New York International Auto Show. Jason Szenes / EPA

In pictures: Hot cars at New York International Auto Show

With more than 1 million visitors annually, the New York International Auto Show is one of the most important shows for the US car industry. Here are some of the vehicles to be shown in this year’s edition.

 The cast of Fast & Furious 7, including Michelle Rodriguez and Vin Diesel, centre, on set at Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi. Jeffrey E Biteng / The National

Fast & Furious 7 filming in full swing at Emirates Palace

Filming for Fast & Furious 7 has started and we have the first photos of the cast and crew on set at Emirates Palace hotel this morning. Visitors staying at Emirates Palace say they have been kept away from certain areas in the grounds.


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Abu Dhabi clears the air on confusion over new shisha cafe laws

January 30, 2014

Not all shisha cafes will be have to stop serving from February 1, when tough enforcement of laws come into effect.


Ajman clinic helps more than 300 people quit smoking

January 28, 2014

At least 324 people gave up smoking last year, bringing the number who have quit after visiting the clinic to 1,618 since 2008.

UAE tobacco law to take effect on January 21

January 6, 2014

The federal anti-tobacco law forbids the sale of tobacco to those under 18, forbids smoking in cars with children under 12 and prohibits tobacco advertisements.

One in five teenage boys in UAE smokes, report finds

November 4, 2013

A World Health Organisation report has found that 21.3 per cent of 13 to 15-year-olds in the UAE use tobacco products.

Scepticism over UAE ban on smoking in cars

August 26, 2013

Police have yet to decide how to enforce the new law that prevents smoking inside cars when there are children below the age of 12 inside.

UAE motorists urged to protect children

August 21, 2013

The secretary of the Higher Child Protection Committee at the interior ministry has praised anti-smoking regulations approved by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid which prohibit smoking in private vehicles in the presence of children under 12.

Ramadan a 'golden opportunity' for UAE smokers to kick the habit

July 22, 2013

Doctors say the holy month is the perfect time of year to stub cigarettes out as Muslims abiding by the rules of the holy month are not allowed to smoke between sunrise and sunset.

Abu Dhabi clinic helps record number of smokers quit

July 22, 2013

The Sheikh Khalifa Medical Cityís Smoking Cessation Clinic helps almost 400 people kick their smoking habit in 18 months.

Cafes abiding by Abu Dhabi shopping mall smoking ban

July 11, 2013

The National visited all 41 coffee shops and cafes in three of the most popular malls in the capital - Marina Mall, Abu Dhabi Mall and Al Wahda Mall.

Sharjah cigarette ban being ignored by shops

July 7, 2013

The first municipality smoking controls have come up against resistance from shop owners who want time to finish their stock.

Stub it out: alarming smoking statistics emerge on UAE youths

May 31, 2013

Almost one in three UAE residents under 18 smoke, revealed Dr Fadila Mohammed Sharif, the Ministry of Health's director of health education and promotion.


600,000 people die each year from passive smoking

May 31, 2013

Tobacco kills nearly six million people each year, of which 600,000 are non-smokers inhaling second-hand smoke, the World Health Organisation has revealed.

Hundreds of Dubai shops to halt tobacco sales for 24 hours

May 30, 2013

The Dubai Without Tobacco Day has been supported by 34 groups and companies this year who have vowed to completely stop sales for 24 hours across 420 outlets.

GCC hike in tobacco prices will see rise in illicit trade, experts warn

May 22, 2013

A White Paper highlights that introducing tobacco tax in the GCC could lead to an increase in illicit trade and the smuggling of cigarettes.