Newsletter of December 9, 2021

Today’s newsletter covers nicotine in New Zealand, bullfighting in Mexico, shorter weeks in Dubai, hate crimes in England, and more.

Bullfighting in Plaza de toros Monumental de México
Mexico City Congress will vote to decide if it bans bullfighting | © Plaza de toros Monumental de México

New Zealand: less nicotine in cigarettes, tobacco banned for future generations

New Zealand wants to ban tobacco for younger generations and further reduces consumption of cigarettes among its population. Only 500 retail shops would be allowed to sell tobacco (-94%). Cigarettes would have less nicotine. People born after 2009 would never be allowed to buy cigarettes. The country is running behind its objective to have less than 5% smokers by 2025, but new regulations won’t be implemented before 2024.

Mexico City Congress will discuss the ban of bullfighting

The Congress of Mexico City will decide whether it bans bullfighting after a commission approved a draft bill prohibiting it. The Plaza de toros Monumental of Mexico City is the world’s largest bullring. Bullfighting creates about 80,000 direct jobs in the entire country. Bullfighting is banned in five states of Mexico while six others consider it as a cultural heritage.

Dubai and Abu Dhabi governments with shorter working weeks

In the United Arab Emirates, Friday afternoons, Saturdays and Sundays will be off for all public sector employees starting on January 2022. The governments of Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Ajman and Umm Al Quwain also update their weekend schedule from Friday-Saturday. The country wants to align with global economy’s timetables, hopes to increase productivity and brings an image of a nation respecting work-life balance.

Sex or gender not the ground for hate crimes for English law commission

The Law Commission of England and Wales considers sex or gender should not be a characteristic for defining hate crime. The commission considered it would make the prosecution of sexual abuse and domestic violence even more difficult and could create a hierarchy among victims. Campaign groups advocated for considering misogyny as a hate crime. The commission report proposes more legal protections to the LGBT+ community but homophobic chants in football stadiums would not have a bespoke offense such as racialist chants.

Somewhere else in the world…

  • Israel announced the completion of a sensor-equipped underground wall. Hamas militants used tunnels in 2014. It’s part of a barrier built around Gaza Strip that cost $1.1 billion.
  • Chilean Parliament approved same-sex marriage.
  • The Philippine journalist Maria Ressa has been allowed to travel to Oslo to receive the Nobel Peace prize she won with Russian Dmitry Muratov for safeguarding freedom of expression. The co-founder of the news website Rappler and critics of President Duterte is currently on bail for an appeal about an online defamation case. She applied to four courts before being able to travel. She faces seven court cases.

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