Coca-Cola in a statement said it “strictly prohibits any type of forced labor in our supply chain” and monitors its suppliers.

The company also said its facility in Xinjiang that supplies sugar to a local bottling facility that has been linked to allegations of forced labor “successfully completed an audit in 2019.”

Greg Rossiter, director of global communications at Nike, said it “did not lobby against” the bill but did engage in “constructive discussions” with congressional staff aides.

Nike responded to the forced labor claims by referring to a March statement that said the company does not source products from the region and ensures that its supplies are not using materials from Xinjiang.

It also said its factory in Qingdao stopped hiring workers from Xinjiang in 2019 and conducted an audit to determine whether there were any employees from the region at the facility.

The bill would require companies sending goods to the US to examine the supply chains and possibly drop business with Chinese suppliers.

It would also ban importing goods made “in whole or in part” in Xinjiang unless the companies can prove that the products were not made with forced labor.

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IDF fires mysteriously timed flares near Gaza, Lebanon border – reports

IDF artillery allegedly fired flares near the borders with both Lebanon and Gaza around the same time on Monday evening, according to reports by Israeli and Arab media.
 
At 9:30, the Palestinian Safa Press Agency tweeted a picture of an alleged flare which their correspondent claimed was fired toward the Kissufim area of southern Israel, east of the Gaza city of Khan Younis.
 
Fewer than 10 minutes later, a reporter for the Lebanese Hezbollah-affiliated Al-Manar tweeted a picture of his own, which he claims fell near the Israel-Lebanon border.
 
According to Israeli media, the flares in northern Israel were fired due to fears of an intrusion into Israeli territory in the area of the Manara Cliff in the Upper Galilee, to aid the soldiers conducting searches.
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Israeli Data Suggests Protection From Vaccines Drops Down to Nothing After Just 6 Months (Just 16% Benefit)

Taking the mRNA side-effects lottery…for six months of partial protection from a strong flu

People vaccinated before late February are twice as likely to catch the coronavirus than other inoculated Israelis, according to new research.

“We looked at tens of thousands of people tested in the month of June, alongside data on how long had passed since their second shot, and found that those vaccinated early were more likely to test positive,” Dr. Yotam Shenhar, who headed the research, told The Times of Israel.

“This definitely reinforces the argument for giving a third vaccine dose to the elderly.”

The report, published by the healthcare provider Leumit, comes on the heels of other Israeli studies that suggest a decreasing vaccine effectiveness, partly as a result of the Delta variant and partly because of the passage of time. However, British data indicates the Israeli studies may be overstating the case.

Data released by the Health Ministry on Thursday suggested that people vaccinated in January were said to have just 16% protection against infection now, while in those vaccinated in April the effectiveness was at 75%

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Message in a balloon: Hamas threatens violence unless Israel allows Qatari aid

Amid now-resolved dispute over delayed entrance of Doha-purchased fuel into Gaza, terror group gives apparent approval for arson attacks along the border

Masked Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorists prepare incendiary balloons east of Gaza city, to launch across the border fence towards Israel on June 15, 2021. (MAHMUD HAMS / AFP)

In the context of the Gaza Strip, Israel and Hamas have developed several methods of communication to circumvent their official lack of direct contact. One of the terror group’s preferred means of getting a message across to Israel has been balloon-borne incendiary devices.

Since the practice of launching them began in 2018, such arson attacks have come to serve as an initial, limited way of indicating to Israel that Hamas is serious about its demands — now, as in the past, for Qatari aid to enter the Strip — and that it is willing to escalate tensions, potentially to the point of combat, in order to see them fulfilled.

Throughout the day on Sunday several balloons sparked brushfires in southern Israel, which were quickly extinguished by Israeli firefighters.

 

The balloons are typically not launched directly by Hamas operatives, but by smaller groups on the border. However, as Hamas maintains strict control over the frontier, it has to give at least tacit approval for the arson attacks, if not explicitly order them.

In response, Israel cut the Gaza fishing zone by half, from 12 nautical miles to six, and launched a series of late-night airstrikes on Hamas targets in the Strip.

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Saudi Arabia prefers to normalize ties with Israel under Biden – report Under the US-brokered Abraham Accords, Israel has already signed normalization deals with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.

Saudi Arabia appears to have delayed plans to normalize ties with Israel until after US President-elect Joe Biden enters office on January 20, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.

It speculated that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman “pulled back from a deal, according to the Saudi advisers and US officials, largely because of the US election result.”

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Britcoin, negative interest-rates and large debt are all linked

UK news has over the past few days been positive with Retail Sales growth and falling Covis-19 numbers. To that this morning we can add something of a gold rush at the Tokyo Olympics. But the weekend saw the establishment out in full force preparing for a more troubled view of the future and let me open with this from the Mail Online.

Cash in people’s pockets would be superseded by a new ‘Britcoin’ digital currency in a plan being pushed by Chancellor Rishi Sunak.

In what Treasury insiders say would be the biggest upheaval in the monetary system for centuries, the Bank of England would establish a direct digital equivalent to physical money and take control of it in the same way as sterling.

Its supporters in the Treasury say that it would allow the Bank to give the economy a boost in times of financial crisis by paying the ‘Britcoins’ directly into people’s bank accounts.

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