Kabul police raid hookah cafes in 'debauchery' crackdown

November 27, 2016 19:35

KABUL - Afghan police and health officials raided cafes and restaurants in Kabul on Sunday, confiscating hookah water pipes and paraphernalia in a campaign to halt "debauchery and vulgarity."

Critics say the campaign will only distract police from the Afghan capital's deteriorating security situation, while doing little to change the pervasive smoking culture in the long-term.

Hookah cafes, where customers inhale fruit-flavored tobacco using pipes that draw the smoke through water, are popular public gathering spots for Afghan men. The Afghan authorities, however, say the cafes can be breeding grounds for petty criminals.

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