Thu, Aug 21, 2003 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ CambodiaMost city food contaminated

Cambodian government health experts said yesterday up to 80 percent of food sold in Phnom Penh markets and restaurants is contaminated with dangerous chemicals. Spot checks of markets and some restaurants around the city by health inspectors showed only 20 to 30 percent of food sold in the capital was in "OK hygiene," or free of chemical preservatives such as borax, a disinfectant shown to damage internal organs, including the brain. The city health department launched a campaign early last year to educate vendors in Phnom Penh about using dangerous chemicals in their foods, but many continue to use them, Dr. Chhouv Kong Phally, municipal chief of health promotion and hygiene said.

■ Australia

Killer given compensation

Authorities said yesterday they will appeal a court decision awarding A$300,000 (US$195,000) compensation to a man who killed a woman on the day he was released from a psychiatric hospital seven years ago. The compensation, announced Tuesday, sparked outrage among groups supporting victims of crime. Kevin Presland slashed his brother's fiancee's throat on July 4, 1995 -- the same day he was released from a state hospital where he was being treated for a psychotic illness. He was found innocent of murder on grounds he was mentally ill, and detained in a jail psychiatric ward until his release in 1998.

■ Australia

Ships make way for whale

The extraordinary all-white whale making its way up the Great Barrier Reef on Australia's east coast is none the worse for bashing into a boat at the weekend. The rare 12m humpback, dubbed Migaloo, smashed into a 10m trimaran on Saturday, ripping off rigging and part of the rudder. To protect Migaloo, the world's only known white humpback, Queensland authorities plan to fit it with a radio tracking device and warn ships to give it a clear berth. Migaloo has since been spotted and didn't appear to be injured. Migaloo was first sighted in 1991 and has been seen regularly in the last four years journeying from the Antarctic to breed in the tropical waters of north Queensland.

■ China

Beauty secrets sought

Scientists at a university in central China are trying to discover the secret of beauty by collecting DNA samples from 20 flawless woman . Researchers at the school of biology in Hunan University plans to study the DNA samples to see if they can find a common denominator in the women's genetic make-up that might provide the secret to beauty. The research team has contacted a local TV company for help in tracking down 20 of the most beautiful women in the province for its project. The TV company said it had agreed in principle to help the university project, provided the scientists were serious about using the data they collected for research

■ China

Doctor sold female patients

Chinese police arrested the director of a psychiatric hospital for drugging female patients and selling them off as wives. Dr. Wang Chaoying, head of a mental hospital in Huazhou in southern Guangdong, had made more than 20 transactions since 1998 in which he sold patients as wives for "thousands of yuan." Reports said the women had been forced to take medicine before they were sold in order to keep the buyers from realizing they were mental patients. Some of the men later demanded refunds.

■ NigeriaStoning execution delayed

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