Seattle aims to clamp down on indoor smoking lounges after violence

Seattle wants to close about a dozen water pipe smoking lounges linked to three homicides and other violence over the past year and a half, its mayor said on Monday. The city is expanding its authority to revoke business licenses and pursuing criminal charges against the owner of a hookah lounge located near where a man was killed last month, Mayor Ed Murray said in a statement. “Far too many smoking lounges attract and sustain illegal, violent activity that has no place in our neighborhoods,” Murray said.
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Western companies look hard at China as growth slows

Dumex milk powder products of Danone are seen on display on shelves at a supermarket in BeijingThe Chinese slowdown is forcing many Western companies to take a hard look at their businesses there, leading many to reduce investments, costs and product lines and to tackle increasing bad debts. Double digit growth rates during the first decade of the millennium lured scores of Western companies to invest heavily in China. A recent equities market rout has dashed hopes China will, in the coming years, return to the robust growth it saw in the past.

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