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By Faith Hung TAIPEI (Reuters) - The leaders of rivals China and Taiwan expressed condolences on Thursday for victims of a TransAsia Airways turboprop plane that crashed during a thunderstorm the previous day killing 48 people including two French nationals. The plane, a 70-seat ATR 72, crashed near the runway on the small island of Penghu, west of Taiwan island, with 54 passengers and four crew on board. "Today is a very sad day in the history of Taiwan aviation," Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou said in a statement. "All of Taiwan is grieving." China's president, Xi Jinping, who is on a Latin America tour, felt "deeply grieved" after learning the tragedy has caused heavy casualties, the mainland's State Council Taiwan Affairs Office, said in a statement, according to the Xinhua news agency.
SHANGHAI (Reuters) - China's food regulator has visited close to 600 restaurants, businesses and food distributors, the watchdog said in a statement, in an investigation into a fast-spreading food safety scare. The safety scare has already dragged in U.S. chains McDonald's Corp, KFC-parent Yum Brands Inc and coffee giant Starbucks Corp. Yum severed ties with OSI Group, the U.S. parent of the China-based meat-processing factory at the center of the incident, after Shanghai police detained five people from the facility on Wednesday. (Reporting by Adam Jourdan; Editing by Paul Tait)
By David Schwartz PHOENIX (Reuters) - An Arizona inmate took almost two hours to die by lethal injection on Wednesday and his lawyers said he "gasped and snorted" before succumbing in the latest botched execution to raise questions about the death penalty in the United States. The execution of convicted double murderer Joseph Wood began at 1:52 p.m. local time at a state prison complex, and the 55-year-old was pronounced dead just shy of two hours later at 3:49 p.m., the Arizona attorney general's office said. "Arizona appears to have joined several other states who have been responsible for an entirely preventable horror: a bungled execution. The public should hold its officials responsible." Arizona Governor Jan Brewer expressed concern over how long the lethal injection procedure took and ordered the state's Department of Corrections to conduct a full review, but said justice had been done and that the execution was lawful.