Jif issues recall over salmonella concerns. Judge blocks end of asylum prohibitions for migrants. Will Biden send US military to defend Taiwan from China?
Jif issues recall over salmonella concerns
Peanut butter brand Jif has issued a recall of products distributed nationwide after 14 consumers in 12 states came down with salmonella poisoning. The recall applies to 40 Jif products with lot code numbers 1274425 to 2140425. This only if the first seven numbers end in 425, which indicates it was made in Jif’s Lexington, KY, facility. You can see a full list of recalled products by clicking here.
The 12 states that have reported salmonella cases possibly linked to Jif products are: Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, Missouri, Ohio, North Carolina, New York, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia and Washington. Two patients had symptoms severe enough to require hospitalization.
Salmonella can cause fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. The FDA advises any consumers who possess products subject to the recall to dispose of them immediately. Consumers should also wash and sanitize any surfaces and utensils the peanut butter may have touched.
Judge blocks end of asylum prohibitions for migrants
Today was to be the end of Title 42 restrictions which have prevented migrants from seeking asylum in the US since the Trump administration. Trump enacted Title 42 as an emergency public health measure at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. The order has been used to expel migrants 1.7 million times since coming into effect.
After COVID cases waned earlier this year and the CDC deemed Title 42 no longer necessary, President Biden promised to end the restrictions. However, federal judges in different districts have repeatedly blocked the order to lift restrictions. Most recently, a Louisiana judge ruled the move improper since there had been no public comment period or evaluation of the impact on the nation’s health facilities.
Many politicians, including some Democrats, have expressed doubts that the federal government is ready to receive and process the hundreds of thousands of migrants who would arrive immediately after Title 42 ends. But immigrant advocates fear that the longer Title 42 is in place, the harder it will be to lift.
Advocates have also highlighted Title 42’s unequal application to people from different countries. Since the war in Ukraine began, the restrictions were waived for Ukrainian and Russian asylum seekers. Cubans, Venezuelans and people from other countries with which the US has poor diplomatic relations have also largely been able to seek asylum in the US because of the difficulties of returning them.
Will Biden send US military to defend Taiwan from China?
President Biden is in Tokyo for trade negotiations with several Asian nations. A reporter there asked Biden whether he was willing to involve the US militarily in defending Taiwan if China invaded. Biden answered “Yes- that’s the commitment we made”.
The answer turned heads because the Biden administrations and previous administration have always adopted “strategic ambiguity” on this point. Officially, the US has long accepted the “One China” policy, which recognizes territories such as Hong Kong and Taiwan as sovereign Chinese territories. Because of this policy, the US has no formal diplomatic relations with Taiwan. However, the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act requires the US to give Taiwan the means to defend itself in the event of a Chinese invasion. It does not require the US to intervene militarily.
Confusingly, Biden says his comments do not indicate a change in US policy. Despite frequent military fly-overs and bluster by Beijing, Biden says he does not expect China to try to seize Taiwan by force. However, he bases that assessment on the strength of the international community’s resolve to condemn such an action.
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