- The Washington Times - Friday, October 12, 2001

Japanese scientists say anthrax easy to spread
TOKYO Japanese bioterrorism researchers warned yesterday how easily the deadly anthrax bacteria can be cultivated and spread after all, it has been used in Japan.
"It's relatively easy to obtain anthrax," said Dr. Nobuhiko Okabe, director of Japan's Infectious Disease Surveillance Center, the coordinating hub for outbreaks of infectious diseases in the country.
"Anthrax itself is stable and easy to carry. So for someone who has bacteriological knowledge, it's not very difficult to spread." Disciples of the Aum Shinri Kyo doomsday sect used it in the summer of 1994 in Tokyo's populous Koto Ward, but it resulted only in complaints of a terrible smell.

25 Chinese suffocate on South Korean ship
BEIJING China demanded South Korean cooperation in fighting human trafficking yesterday after 25 of its nationals suffocated in the storage tank of a South Korean ship and were dumped into the sea by the crew.
"We have repeatedly requested that the Korean side actively collaborate with China and thoroughly investigate this case," Foreign Ministry spokesman Sun Yuxi told a news conference.
"This is a transnational criminal attempt at organized smuggling between Chinese and Korean [gangsters] working together," Mr. Sun said. "We strongly condemn this heinous crime," he added.
The victims were among a group of 60. Thirty-five survivors, 11 of them ethnic Koreans, were in good condition, were being detained and were to be deported, said police in the southwestern South Korean port of Yosu.

China's press looks at AIDS epidemic
BEIJING In an unusual official look at China's AIDS epidemic, a state newspaper yesterday reported that 118 persons in one village contracted the virus while selling blood.
At least 10 of those infected have developed full-blown AIDS and six have died, the Guangzhou Daily said. The report added to mounting official disclosures about the scale of China's AIDS crisis.
Health officials say independent estimates that 600,000 Chinese are infected with the AIDS virus are probably accurate. A senior health official in August blamed the spread of the virus on intravenous drug use and China's flourishing sex trade.
U.N. specialists warn that without prompt steps to improve public education and end such unsafe practices, 20 million Chinese could be infected by 2010.

Weekly notes
Japan's Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi will visit one of the major symbols of his country's brutal rule of the Korean peninsula during a trip to Seoul next week, South Korean officials said yesterday. He will visit either a notorious former Japanese prison in Seoul, a park where 33 Koreans sparked an uprising in 1919 or South Korea's largest center providing information on Japan's 1910-1945 colonial rule. Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra was awarded Cambodia's top royal honor during a one-day visit yesterday, the Foreign Ministry said in Phnom Pehn.


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