Scientists: UN Soldiers Brought Deadly Superbug to Americas

Haiti

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By MATTHEW MOSK, BRIAN ROSS and RYM MOMTAZ | ABC News – Thu, Jan 12, 2012

Compelling new scientific evidence suggests United Nations peacekeepers have carried a virulent strain of cholera — a super bug — into the Western Hemisphere for the first time.

The vicious form of cholera has already killed 7,000 people in Haiti, where it surfaced in a remote village in October 2010. Leading researchers from Harvard Medical School and elsewhere told ABC News that, despite UN denials, there is now a mountain of evidence suggesting the strain originated in Nepal, and was carried to Haiti by Nepalese soldiers who came to Haiti to serve as UN peacekeepers after the earthquake that ravaged the country on Jan. 12, 2010 — two years ago today. Haiti had never seen a case of cholera until the arrival of the peacekeepers, who allegedly failed to maintain sanitary conditions at their base.

“What scares me is that the strain from South Asia has been recognized as more virulent, more capable of causing severe disease, and more transmissible,” said John Mekalanos, who chairs the Department of Microbiology and Immunobiology at Harvard Medical School. “These strains are nasty. So far there has been no secondary outbreak. But Haiti now represents a foothold for a particularly dangerous variety of this deadly disease.” Continue reading

Hackers attack Mexico’s official websites

Coat of arms of Mexico.

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(philstar.com) Updated September 16, 2011 10:15 AM

MEXICO CITY (Xinhua) — Several Mexican official websites, including that of the Defense and Public Security Ministry, were out of service Thursday after attacks by a hacker group called Anonymous.

The ministry’s websites and those of several local governments went offline Thursday afternoon and could not be accessed so far.

“The website of the Defense Ministry is temporarily out of service and will be restored during the day,” a spokesman for the ministry said, without confirming whether it had been a target of cyber attack.

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