More anthrax problems at CDC
A second investigation has detailed additional safety problems at federal health laboratories in Atlanta, including the use of expired disinfectants and the transfer of dangerous germs in Ziploc bags.
The new findings were disclosed Monday in a congressional committee’s summary of a U.S. Department of Agriculture report on the CDC anthrax incident.
The USDA report focuses on an incident last month at a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lab that handles bioterrorism agents. The lab was supposed to completely kill anthrax samples before sending them to two other CDC labs. But the higher-security lab did not completely sterilize the bacteria.
Pakistani teen asks for release of girls
The Pakistani teen who survived a Taliban assassination attempt in 2012 marked her 17th birthday Monday with a visit to Nigeria and urged Islamic extremists to free the 219 schoolgirls who were kidnapped there, calling them her “sisters.”
Malala Yousafzai, who has become an international symbol for women’s rights in the face of hard-line Islam, said Nigeria’s president promised to meet for the first time with the abducted girls’ parents.
“My birthday wish this year is ‘Bring Back Our Girls’ now and alive,” she said, using the social-media slogan that has been picked up around the world to demand freedom for the girls, who were abducted by the extremist group Boko Haram in April from a school in the remote northeast Nigerian town of Chibok.
Guardsman kills 2 people, self in Utah
SALT LAKE CITY
An Army National Guardsman left a suicide note in his northern Utah home before killing a college student and one other person early Monday, then fatally shooting himself at another home, authorities said.
Jared Tolman, 23, wrote that he was sorry, and that what he was about to do was selfish, said Logan Police Lt. Rod Peterson.
He is reported to have sent a series of unanswered text messages to Mackenzie Madden before he kicked down the door of her apartment two blocks from Utah State University shortly after midnight.
He then fired an assault rifle multiple times at Madden and a 25-year-old man, both people he knew, police said.
UK foreign minister to quit job next year
Britain’s high-profile foreign minister, William Hague, is leaving his job, the government said Monday — a surprise announcement that precedes a major shakeup of the Conservative-led administration.
Prime Minister David Cameron’s office said Hague, who has been Britain’s most-visible statesman on international crises in the Middle East and Ukraine, was moving to the post of leader of the House of Commons and will quit national politics next year.
Office: VA makes errors in benefits
In a rush to cut a huge backlog of claims for disability benefits, the Department of Veterans Affairs is making payments to tens of thousands of veterans without adequate medical evidence that they deserve the benefits, the department’s inspector general’s office said Monday.
Without improvements, the VA could make unsupported payments to veterans totaling about $371 million over the next five years for claims of 100-percent disability alone, said Linda Halliday, an assistant inspector general.