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Pistorius admits 'no reason' to fire fatal shots

In a pummelling cross-examination the prosecution called Oscar Pistorius's account of killing his girlfriend "impossible" on Thursday, zeroing in on apparent inconsistencies in key parts of his testimony. "Your version is so improbable that nobody would ever think it's reasonably, possibly true it's so impossible," Prosecutor Gerrie Nel thundered during his second day interrogating the Olympian. Nel also rubbished the athlete's claim that police moved important pieces of evidence after arriving at the scene early on Valentine's Day morning last year.

Tiny sponges could save lives on the battlefield

A simple new method could revolutionize battlefield medicine: a syringe filled with injectable sponges, shot directly into a wound to stop massive bleeding -- a major cause of combat fatalities. The survival rate of US soldiers wounded while fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan was nearly 90 percent -- a record for modern armed conflict -- with only 6,800 deaths out of 51,900 wounded. This is due largely to an improvement in battlefield first aid during the critical first hour in which the wounded person must be evacuated by helicopter to a hospital.

A look at the type of chemicals and pollution found at contaminated sites

OTTAWA - The Parliamentary Budget Office has released a new report on the cost to clean up federal contaminated sites. Here's a look at the type and number of contaminants that have been found in surface and ground water, sediment, soil and the air: Metal, metalloid, and organometallic: 7,858 PHCs (petroleum hydrocarbons): 6,726 PAHs (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon): 5,253 Petroleum hydrocarbons and PAH's: 1,799 BTEXs (benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xzylene): 866 Other: 762 Other organics: 520

Miami internal affairs cop arrested on cocaine trafficking charges

By Kevin Gray MIAMI (Reuters) - An internal affairs officer with the Miami-Dade Police Department has been charged with helping drug smugglers and orchestrating a murder-for-hire plot to have assassins dressed as cops kill their rivals, officials said. Ralph Mata, 45, appeared in a federal court in Miami on Wednesday, a day after he was arrested in connection with a scheme to smuggle cocaine from the Dominican Republic to New Jersey and elsewhere, according to federal prosecutors.

Some Oregon cities say no to pot dispensaries for now

By Shelby Sebens PORTLAND, Oregon (Reuters) - Over 20 Oregon cities and counties are moving to temporarily ban medical marijuana dispensaries ahead of a May deadline, reflecting a divide between liberal Portland and more conservative rural areas wary about allowing medical weed. The local moves to opt out of allowing sales of the drug as medicine come even as activists collect signatures to get a measure on the November ballot that, if approved, would allow recreational use of the drug.

WHO unveils emergency moves against Ebola onslaught in Guinea

The World Health Organization launched a raft of emergency measures in the Guinean capital Conakry Thursday to control an outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus that has so far killed a hundred people across the country. The UN health agency announced emergency training for 70 people who would fan out across the community to track people who have had close contact with Ebola patients. The agency is also setting up a special alert and response operation centre within the Guinean ministry of health in order to handle all matters relating to the Ebola scare.

WHO unveils emergency moves against Ebola onslaught in Guinea

The World Health Organization launched a raft of emergency measures in the Guinean capital Conakry Thursday to control an outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus that has so far killed a hundred people across the country. The Geneva-based UN health agency announced emergency training for 70 people who would fan out across the community to track people who have had close contact with Ebola patients. The agency is also setting up a special alert and response operation centre within the Guinean ministry of health in order to handle all matters relating to the Ebola scare.

French antitrust body probes Roche, Novartis over eye treatment

PARIS/ZURICH (Reuters) - France's competition authority is investigating drugmakers Roche and Novartis on suspicion they were involved in anti-competitive practices in respect of eye disease treatment, the companies said on Thursday. A statement on the authority's website said it had conducted "search and confiscation" operations on April 8 in relation to treatment for wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD), but it did not name the companies involved.

'Zero tolerance' Sweden leaves heavy drug users behind

Sweden boasts one of Europe's lowest consumption of recreational drugs, but the same strict policy authorities consider key to success could also be pushing up the number of drug-related deaths. Cocaine, ecstasy and even cannabis are rarely seen in streets and clubs in line with Sweden's official "zero tolerance" approach, whose ambitious target is clear. "The overarching goal: a society free from illegal drugs," it states.

Denmark opens more 'drug rooms' after successful trial

The gangly, 46-year-old father of three speaks five languages and talks effortlessly about international politics. What he can't do, for the moment at least, is kick his cocaine and heroin habit. But when he shoots up, Kais Neni now goes to a supervised, state-funded drug consumption room -- Denmark's 18-month-old approach to a problem with no easy solution. "It's better than being in the streets," said Neni, before getting his fix in the space where a medical professional remains on hand to help drug users if they overdose.
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