Japan’s Move to Lower South Korea Trade Status Takes Effect

TOKYO (AP) — Japan’s downgrading of South Korea’s trade status took effect Wednesday, a decision that has already set off a series of reactions hurting their relations. Japanese manufacturers now must apply for approval for each technology-related contract for South Korean export, rather than the simpler checks granted a preferential trade partner, which is still…

Judge Orders Drugmaker to Pay $572 Million in Opioid Lawsuit

NORMAN, OK (AP) — An Oklahoma judge on Monday found Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiaries helped fuel the state’s opioid crisis and ordered the consumer products giant to pay $572 million, more than twice the amount another drug manufacturer agreed to pay in a settlement. Cleveland County District Judge Thad Balkman’s ruling followed the first…

Lawmakers on Each Side Blame the Other in Hong Kong Protests

HONG KONG (AP) — Lawmakers on each side of Hong Kong’s political divide said Monday the other side bears responsibility after violence during anti-government protests over the weekend. Pro-government members of the Legislative Council condemned the acts of protesters who blocked streets, threw gasoline bombs and assaulted police officers. “You can say a lot of…

Planned Parenthood Sees Swift Fallout From Quitting Program

SALT LAKE CITY, UT (AP) — Planned Parenthood clinics in several states are charging new fees, tapping into financial reserves, intensifying fundraising and warning of more unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases in the wake of its decision to quit a $260 million federal family planning program in a dispute with the Trump administration over…

Urgency for Vaccine Grows as Virus Ravages China’s Pigs

BEIJING (AP) — Scientists are working to develop a vaccine to help guard the world’s pork supply as a deadly virus ravages Asia’s pig herds. Farmers have long contained its spread by quarantining and killing infected animals, but the disease’s devastating march into East Asia is intensifying the search for another solution. The virus hadn’t been…