The government wants to raise the minimum age for buying tobacco from 16 to 18 in an attempt to cut the number of teenage smokers. Health Secretary Patricia Hewitt hopes the move will appease Labour MPs who are threatening to block compromise moves on smoking in pubs and other public places. The measure would bring Britain into line with most American states and other EU countries. The Independent on Sunday 4/12/05 pages 1 & 4 The Observer 4/12/05 page 5 The Sunday Telegraph 4/12/05 page 10