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21 die when bus flips, catches fire in India

Published Sep. 4, 2005

A bus overturned and caught fire in central India on Wednesday, killing 21 people and seriously injuring 28 others, police said.

The bus lost control after a tire burst outside the industrial town of Maneri in the Madhya Pradesh state, said Arakshya Kailash Varma, aide to the local police chief.

A gas can placed behind the driver's seat then caught fire, Varma said by telephone from Jabalpur, the nearest town.

"The bus turned upside down. Then the fire started. All the bodies are totally black and unrecognizable," Varma said.

Tainted blood brings charges in Canada

TORONTO _ Police filed charges Wednesday in what is considered one of Canada's worst public health disasters, a tainted blood scandal that infected thousands of people with HIV and hepatitis C.

The Canadian Red Cross, four doctors and an American pharmaceutical company, Armour Pharmaceutical Co. of Bridgewater, N.J., were all charged after a five-year investigation by a Royal Canadian Mounted Police task force.

About 1,200 people were infected with HIV and thousands more contracted hepatitis C after receiving tainted blood and blood products in the 1970s and 1980s, some allegedly from U.S. prison inmates.

Protests continue in Venezuela

CARACAS, Venezuela _ Demonstrators blocked a busy highway in Venezuela's capital with cars, trucks and flaming piles of trash to protest the government's militarization of Caracas' police.

Smoke clouds billowed over the Francisco Fajardo highway Tuesday only hours after opposition Mayor Alfredo Pena led a march to Congress to protest President Hugo Chavez's appointment of a new police chief.

National Guard troops fired tear gas and pellets to prevent Chavez supporters from clashing with the opposition marchers.

Two die in Colombian bomb attacks

BOGOTA, Colombia _ Bombs exploded at two beachfront hotels, killing two people and wounding 10, and authorities Wednesday blamed Colombia's main rebel group.

The attacks at the Lumar and Santamar hotels Tuesday night brought Colombia's decadeslong civil war to Santa Marta, which lies along the Caribbean Sea and is one of this South American country's top tourist destinations.

The two bombs exploded almost simultaneously in front of the hotels, severely damaging them and nearby buildings in the resort 450 miles north of Bogota.

Authorities blamed the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia for the attacks.

Nigerian newspaper office burned

LAGOS, Nigeria _ Muslims burned down a newspaper office Wednesday to protest an article suggesting Islam's prophet might have chosen a wife from among contestants in the Miss World beauty pageant being hosted by Nigeria.

The local office of ThisDay in the northern city of Kaduna was destroyed, police and newspaper officials said. No one was in the building, editor Eniola Bello told the Associated Press.

Police were protecting ThisDay staffers in Kaduna, and hundreds of heavily armed security forces were deployed to guard the national daily's offices throughout the West African nation of 120-million.

Argentina's jobless end 3-day protest

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina _ Thousands of unemployed Argentines concluded a peaceful three-day protest Wednesday demanding jobs, food and social benefits from their cash-starved government.

Four years of painful economic recession, 22 percent unemployment and a collapse in social aid have led to widespread problems in Argentina, once considered South America's most middle-class nation. Now half of the country's 37-million people live below the poverty line.

Since Monday, members of major groups representing the unemployed held similar rallies and marches throughout Argentina's 21 provinces. The three-day protest culminated with a rally on the capital's main plaza outside the presidential palace. No violence was reported.

Two charged in fellow soldier's death

FRANKFURT, Germany _ Two U.S. soldiers have been charged with murdering an 18-year-old private who was found dead in a Frankfurt garage, an Army spokesman said Wednesday.

Pfc. Jonathan Schroeder and Pfc. Andrew Humiston are being held at the U.S. military base in Mannheim pending an Article 32 hearing, the civilian equivalent of a grand jury investigation, to determine if the men will go to trial, 1st Armored Division spokesman Maj. Thomas Shrader said. No date has been set for the hearing.

The men are accused of robbing and murdering Pfc. Clint C. Lamebear of Church Rock, N.M., who died of a blow to the head early Saturday.