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  • 28817_dd_regions_177_

    Germany, UK Issue Travel Warnings For US Due To Government Shutdown

    Germany and the United Kingdom have become the first countries to issue advisories for travellers to the United States, warning of possible delays at immigration and tourist sites as the U.S. government remains partially shut due to a budget impasse.

    In a notice posted on its website, the German Foreign Ministry warned that “travellers should expect longer wait times at immigration control,” even though air traffic controllers and Customs and Security operations at U.S. airports should be operating normally; while the U.K. government also warned of delays in air travel and at immigration.

    According to a report by the Daily Mail, the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA), the U.K.’s travel trade association for tour operators and travel agents, also warned British tourists that they were unlikely to receive a refund on their holidays unless a “significant part” of their trip has been affected by closures as a result of the U.S. shutdown.

    According to ABTA, around 30,000 Britons are currently holidaying in the U.S., with only a fraction booking trips to national parks, which have all been closed.

    Britons comprise the largest European tourism contingent to the U.S., according to U.S. Commerce Department statistics, followed by Germans.

    On Wednesday, European leaders expressed disappointment at the federal government shutdown, but were optimistic of minimal damage to the economy, as long as ...

  • The_tyler_group_177_

    Cigarette health warnings and a ban on ‘light’ labeling becomes law

    Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla signed a bill that mandates health warnings on all cigarette packets as well as prohibiting brands from using the words “light” or “suave” in their labels.

    The measure is the latest curb by the Costa Rican government on tobacco consumption, coming on the heels of a ban on sales of small packs of cigarettes.

    “This is the end of a 10-year fight against tobacco,” Chinchilla said after signing the bill on Tuesday. Chinchilla said opposition had successfully impeded the cigarette regulations, with vendors and producers arguing it would hurt the economy. She argued that a healthier population would be an economic boost.

    Chinchilla’s health minister, Daisy Corrales, presented a slideshow at the San José press conference showing an example health warning. The label showed a cloud of smoke surrounding a sleeping infant, with a warning in Spanish noting the harmful effects of cigarette smoke on children.

    “This is one of the No. 1 enemies of children and the people of the country,” Corrales said.

    The legislation mandates that the top half of all cigarette packs contain the Health Ministry’s message, as well as the bottom half of the back.