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December 11, 2008

Mice threaten huge albatross

CNN is reporting that an albatross on a South Atlantic island had its worst nesting season recorded due to mice.

The house mice are not native to Gough Island and are reportedly at risk to cause the extinction of the Tristan albatross. The threat comes from the mice eating the albatross chicks before they become fledglings. Additionally, albatross only lay eggs once every two years.

A study showed that out of 1,764 albatrosses incubating eggs, only 246 chicks made it to the fledgling stage. The BBC News has reported that these mice are "supersized" and have been attacking petrels and shearwaters, in addition to the albatrosses.

Regarding prevention of the mice, Biologist Dr. Richard Cuthbert said, "Successful eradications in the past have used poisons, particularly in New Zealand; that is one option."

November 23, 2008

Six killed in Columbian volcano landslide

CNN has reported that six people were killed by a volcano eruption landslide that occurred Thursday in Columbia.

Officials reported Sunday that four of the victims were children. Three people are currently missing. The Nevado del Huila volcano destroyed at least 20 homes. The area in which it occurred contains a reservation for Nasa indigenous groups.

Nearly 300 people have been evacuated from their homes. Fox News reported that although they did not know of any casualties, 8,000 people were ordered to evacuate.

This particular volcano erupted in 1993 and killed nine people.

November 16, 2008

U.S. convoy route blocked by Pakistan

CNN has reported that Pakistan has blocked convoys carrying supplies and food to U.S. troops located in Afghanistan.

The blockage is of a key mountain pass, but the International Security Assistance Force, led by NATO, said, "We do not expect any impact on ISAF's ability to carry out operations." Security concerns were said to be the reason for the blocking.

TIME has reported that in addition to the convoys, oil tankers were also banned from entering Afghanistan. The problems are concurrent with the highest level of violence since the Taliban regime was overtaken in 2001.

November 9, 2008

Monk brawl breaks out in Jerusalem

CNN has reported that before a religious ceremony in Jerusalem, a fight broke out amongst monks.

The monks, of the Greek Orthodox and Armenian denominations, began the brawl after a disagreement at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in the Old City. The disagreement was about a procession intended to be held by the Greek members to celebrate a cross found that was believed to be associated with Jesus' crucifixion. After conflict began, the fight broke out.

Many monks walked away with bruises and cuts, and two were detained. The UK's Telegraph has reported that this church is considered one of the most revered locations in Christianity.

October 26, 2008

U.S. accused by Syria in helicopter attack

CNN has reported that a helicopter attack resulting in eight deaths in Syria is being blamed on the U.S. by Syria.

The U.S. is investigating these claims regarding helicopters based in Iraq. It is reported that the helicopters hit a farm, civilian territory, then returning across the border Sunday.

It occurred near a town that houses a camp for Iraqi refugees. ABC News reported that the attack is officially attributed to U.S. forces. The attack allegedly targeted al-Qaida-linked foreign fighters.

The Syrian border is considered uncontrolled, and an easy way for fighters to enter Iraq.

October 19, 2008

Woman beheads man in India

CNN reported that a woman beheaded a man who allegedly attempted to attack her in northern India. She then paraded the head through a market.

The woman was arrested Thursday after authorities received calls from witnesses. The woman, 35, said that the man attacked her from behind as she collected grass for her cow in a forest.

The man had allegedly been stalking her for months, and she verbalized no regret for killing him. CBC News reported that the woman used a sickle to behead the man. The incident happened in the Makkapurva village.

October 12, 2008

Brief existence for tiny fawn

Daily Mail has reported of a fawn named Rupert, of England, who was rescued after his mother was hit by a car.

Rupert's mother was struck and killed by a car, and vets delivered Rupert via Cesarean section. He was born three weeks early, measuring six inches tall.

His attempted recovery took place at Tiggywinkles Wildlife Hospital. However, The Bucks Herald reported that the muntjac deer died later in the week.

Rupert had many signs of a premature baby. The Tiggywinkles staff attempted to give him lamb milk, but it was not digested properly because of a lack of his mother's bacteria.

First Indian woman named saint

Pope Benedict XVI named four new saints to the Roman Catholic Church, including the first Indian woman, CNN reported.

Sister Alphonsa of the Immaculate Conception's honor is being seen as morale boost, due to the Hindu violence being targeted at Christians in India. The ceremony took place in St. Peter's Square, where thousands gathered from the homelands of each of the new saints.

Alphonsa died in 1946, when she was 35. The Hindustan Times reported that the pope spoke that her "heroic virtues of patience, fortitude and perseverance in the midst of suffering remind us that God always provides the strength we need to overcome every trial."

October 6, 2008

Nicaraguan president faces accusations of journalist persecution

CNN has reported that President Daniel Ortega is facing accusations of persecuting journalists.

It is being said that the persecution of the journalists comes from their criticism of the government. The journalists, among other groups, are being investigated for money laundering. But Carlos Chamorro Barrios, of the Center of Media, denies these claims and believes the government is trying to silence opposition.

In a related story, the Miami Herald stated that the government is accusing Barrios of illegally channeling money from other governments to Nicaraguan civil organizations.

September 29, 2008

Baghdad sees deadliest day

34 people were killed Sunday in Baghdad, the highest fatalities in one day, reported CNN.

Several bombings were the cause of the deaths, which fell during Ramadan, the holy month. Some of the bombs included a car bomb as well as a suicide bomber-caused detonation.

Policemen, women, and children were among the fatalities. The New York Times reported that there were a total of five bombings. Three of the bombings were targeted at civilians who were holiday shopping.

The attacks further confirmed Iraqi fears of the security situation.

September 22, 2008

Tainted milk sickens thousands of Chinese children

Tainted milk has caused around 13,000 Chinese children to become ill, CNN reported. Melamine was found in the effected milk products, including baby formula.

There have been four reported deaths related to the milk. The effects of the tainted milk range from kidney stones to ulcers of the urinary tract.

BBC News has reported that the toxin found is a chemical typically found in plastics. It may be added to diluted milk so that it appears to have higher levels of protein.

Investigations are underway to punish those that added the chemical to the milk.