(ANSA) Roma, November 11 - Italian Health Minister Beatrice Lorenzin on Monday was sanguine over impending legalization of electronic cigarettes in public areas, like restaurants and cinemas, where traditional cigarettes will continue to be banned. ''Parliament is sovereign,'' said Lorenzin regarding the Italian parliament's approval of an education decree that contained a passage updating regulations for e-cigarettes. An amendment introduced by Culture Minister Giancarlo Galan of Silvio Berlusconi's People of Freedom (PdL) party struck a clause that would have banished e-cigarettes along with traditional cigarettes from places like cafes, bars and train stations. The decree was passed into law on October 23, and will come into force when it is published in Italy's Official Gazette. ''The legal aspects affecting public health that we placed in (the measure) were not affected,'' said Lorenzin at the margins of a cancer-research awareness event in Rome. Lorenzin said smoking e-cigarettes remains banned in schools. Moreover, consumers will need to be informed of the proper use of the device and the risk of dependency, as well as the nature of the substances contained in the liquid e-cigarette refills. ''Now we also have to see what will happen in Europe, but we have conducted a big battle to prevent e-cigarettes from being equated with medicine,'' said Lorenzin. The mayor of Rome - a transplant surgeon - said e-cigarettes did not produce second-hand smoke or other dangerous emissions for others. Using e-cigarettes is ''not smoking but vaporising. In other words, it is like using an aerosol inside a cinema,'' Ignazio Marino told Radio 24 Ore on Monday. Marino said he did not favor e-cigarettes in public, but its system of nicotine delivery is ''without combustion, thus there is a reduction in the risk of cancer...but not of cardiovascular disease''.
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