- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 25, 2003

FRANCE

Scientists clonerats for research

While people all over the world try to get rid of rats, researchers in France have cloned them. The scientists overcame a quirk in rat physiology to produce genetic duplicates for use in medical research.

Led by researchers at the National Institute of Agricultural Research at Joy en Josas, France, scientists cloned male as well as female rats and then mated them and produced normal, healthy pups. A report on the study appears today in the journal Science.



Scientists hailed the achievement as an important advance in medical research because laboratory rats with special genetic changes can be developed and used to test drugs and other therapies that may benefit human patients.

BOSNIA

Mass grave yields565 war victims

SARAJEVO — The remains of 565 persons have been recovered from the largest mass grave from Bosnia’s 1992-95 war, a local official said yesterday.

Forensic specialists say they expect to exhume about 40 more bodies from the grave, taking the number recovered from the site to more than 600.

In one corner of the grave, investigators found 11 skeletons of children ages 18 months to 12 years, as well as those of 12 women.

SWITZERLAND

WHO seeks moneyfor meningitis vaccine

GENEVA — The World Health Organization said yesterday that it was running out of time to raise money for a vaccine that protects people in Africa’s “meningitis belt” from a vicious new form of the killer disease.

The U.N. agency said the campaign needed $5 million within two weeks to produce enough vaccine before the onset of the meningitis season late this year.

Meningitis outbreaks occur almost every year during the dry season in the “belt” that stretches from Senegal in West Africa to Ethiopia in the east. Last year, at least 44,280 cases of all types of the disease and 5,531 deaths were reported.

ISRAEL

Israel to seekU.S. views on Arafat

NEW YORK — Israel has promised to consult the United States before deciding whether to expel Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat from the Palestinian territories, a senior U.S. official said yesterday.

Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom gave the promise during talks in New York yesterday with Secretary of State Colin L. Powell, the State Department official said.

The Israeli government decided in principle this month to remove Mr. Arafat, who has been confined to his headquarters in the West Bank town of Ramallah for months.

Mr. Shalom said at the time that Israeli leaders should ignore U.S. objections and expel Mr. Arafat.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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