News Headlines - 28 January 2021

NI mother-and-baby homes: Investigation promised into 'significant wrongs' - BBC News

The voices of survivors of mother-and-baby homes in NI will be heard "loudly and clearly" with a new independent investigation, Arlene Foster has said.
The first minister's comments follow the publication of a long-awaited report into mother-and-baby homes and Magdalene Laundries in NI.
The Stormont-commissioned research was carried out by Queen's University and Ulster University... Speaking in the Stormont Assembly on Tuesday, Mrs Foster said a "co-designed and victims-centred" investigative process would take place first.

Biden reverses Trump's transgender military ban

President Joe Biden on Monday signed an executive order repealing the ban on transgender people serving openly in the military, a ban that former President Donald Trump had put in effect, the White House said.
In a statement, the White House said Biden's order "sets the policy that all Americans who are qualified to serve in the Armed Forces of the United States should be able to serve."

Japan to produce 90m doses of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine - Nikkei Asia

Japan is gearing up to produce AstraZeneca COVID-19 shots as it grows desperate to secure enough vaccine for its population of 126 million amid global supply constraints, Nikkei has learned.
Production will be undertaken by JCR Pharmaceuticals, a biotechnology company that does not have experience producing vaccines but can culture the necessary adenoviral vectors.
AstraZeneca commissioned the company in an earlier arrangement. JCR Pharmaceuticals is expected to produce 90 million doses of the vaccine developed by the British drugmaker and Oxford University.

LDP Agrees to Drop Criminal Punishments in Coronavirus Bills - JIJI PRESS

Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party on Thursday agreed to an opposition demand to scrap the introduction of criminal penalties in government-proposed bills to revise laws on the fight against the coronavirus epidemic.
The LDP accepted a request by the major opposition Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan to drop all criminal punishments for coronavirus-infected people who refuse to be hospitalized or to cooperate with contact-tracing surveys.
The LDP plans to replace the criminal penalties with administrative fines.

Former Yankees pitcher Masahiro Tanaka returning to Japan with Eagles | The Japan Times

Masahiro Tanaka is coming home.
The right-hander, who in 2013 led the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles to their only Pacific League pennant and Japan Series title, is returning to the club this season the Eagles announced on Thursday... Tanaka spent the past seven seasons with the New York Yankees, with whom he signed a seven-year $155 million contract in January 2014 after being posted by the Eagles after the 2013 NPB season. He was 78-46 with a 3.74 ERA in 174 appearances for the AL club. Tanaka was an All-Star in his first season and again in 2019. He pitched in 10 playoff games for the Yankees and was 5-4 with a 3.33 ERA.
Tanaka was 3-3 with a 3.56 ERA this past season in the Bronx.