• Kyodo News

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Eleven out of 25 electronic cigarettes sold in Japan have been found to contain small amounts of nicotine, which is banned in such devices, according to the National Consumer Affairs Center of Japan.

Test results show there is not enough evidence to confirm the safety of the 11 varieties of the devices and consumers are advised to exercise caution, the center said Wednesday.

The health ministry is calling on authorities in each prefecture to tell the companies that are marketing the devices to recall or refrain from selling them because they can be categorized by law as pharmaceuticals or medical equipment if they are found to contain nicotine.

Such devices are generally shaped like a cigarette and allows the user to inhale steam generated with electricity.

In 2008, the World Health Organization issued a statement saying, “Contrary to what some marketers of the electronic cigarette imply in their advertisements, the WHO does not consider it to be a legitimate therapy for smokers trying to quit.”

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