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BC-AS--Asian News Digest, AS

October 26, 2014



SINGAPORE — The longer the Ebola outbreak rages in West Africa, the greater chance a traveler infected with the virus touches down in an Asian city. How quickly any case is detected — and the measures taken once it is — will determine whether the virus takes hold in a region where billions live in poverty and public health systems are often very weak. Governments are ramping up response plans, stepping up surveillance at airports and considering quarantine measures. Still, health experts in the region’s less developed countries fear any outbreak would be deadly and hard to contain. By Chris Brummitt. SENT: 1,090 words, photos.


ISLAMABAD — It had all the elements of a classic coup: thousands descending on the capital, clashing with police outside parliament and commandeering state TV to demand the ouster of a civilian leader who had locked horns with the military in a country with a long history of turmoil and dictatorship. But when the tear gas cleared in Islamabad in August, Pakistan’s Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif remained in office with the support of the entire parliament, the troops were still in their barracks, and the protesters had dwindled to a few thousand, their “revolution” confined to a festive, shrinking tent camp. By Munir Ahmed. SENT: 705 words, photos.


GAUHATI, India — Nine people are dead after a passenger bus traveling overnight in India’s remote northeast swerves over a bridge and breaks through the railing to fall into a marshy ravine before dawn Sunday, police say. SENT: 140 words.



NEW YORK — The nurse who was quarantined at a New Jersey hospital because she had contact with Ebola patients in West Africa is criticizing the way she’s been treated. By Verena Dobnik. SENT: 130 words. UPCOMING: 750 words by 0600 GMT, photos, video, audio.

— UNITED NATIONS-EBOLA — US: Ambassador Power to visit 3 Ebola-ravaged countries in West Africa. SENT: 615 words, photo.

— EBOLA-NYC DOCTOR — Dr. Craig Spencer, the physician now being treated for Ebola in New York City, is seen as a globe-trotting do-gooder driven to join the global health fight. SENT: 900 words, photos, video, interactive.


PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Ashoka Mukpo knew he was really in trouble once he saw medical workers in heavy duty suits — the kind meant to prevent the spread of deadly infections — at his bedside. The cameraman, who contracted Ebola while on assignment for NBC in West Africa, describes to The Associated Press the harrowing ordeal of diagnosis, treatment and, finally, recovery he experienced as one of only a handful of patients treated for the deadly virus in the United States. By Jennifer McDermott. SENT: 400 words, photos, video.


NEW YORK — Talk about a tale of two cities: A Dallas hospital got a pop quiz in Ebola and made an early mistake. New York got a peek at the answer sheet and was better prepared at the start. The contrast in handling two Ebola diagnoses highlights how differently cities and hospitals prepare for health emergencies. Ebola came to New York via a doctor who had volunteered to treat patients in Ebola-stricken Guinea. He alerted his aid agency that he had developed a fever, and was transported to Bellevue Hospital Center by specially trained emergency workers wearing protective gear. In Dallas last month, a hospital initially sent home a sick Thomas Eric Duncan, who had traveled from Liberia and who days later would become the nation’s first Ebola diagnosis. A topic-by-topic look at differences between the two cases. By Lauran Neergaard and David B. Caruso. SENT: 910 words, photos.


TULALIP, Wash. — A newly hired teacher who confronted a gunman is being hailed as a hero after a deadly shooting rampage in the cafeteria of a Washington state high school. First-year social studies teacher Megan Silberberger intervened in the attack on Friday at Marysville-Pilchuck High School, teachers union president Randy Davis says. By Martha Bellisle and Nigel Duara. SENT: 650 words, photos, video.


RIO DE JANEIRO — President Dilma Rousseff is counting on Brazilians’ gratefulness for a decade of progress to overcome concerns about a sluggish economy as the leftist leader seeks re-election on Sunday after a bitter, unpredictable campaign. By Brad Brooks. SENT: 380 words, photos. Will be updated after polls open at 1000 GMT; polls close at 2200 GMT.


MIAMI — The bodies surfaced near a popular South Florida beach: Four men, all in the height of their youth, with nothing to identify them. Around the same time, Ramon Saul Sanchez began receiving phone calls. A group of nine Cuban migrants, including one pregnant woman, had left the island a week before. No one had heard from them. Working with relatives and authorities, Sanchez began the painful process of trying to find out what happened to them. With Cuban families scattered between the island and the U.S., and limited diplomatic relations between both countries, identifying the bodies of rafters who come ashore and finding out what happened to the missing is an arduous process. Scholars estimate one in four does not survive the journey, and many of their bodies are never found or identified. The issue has risen again recently amid a sharp increase this year in the number of Cubans attempting the 110-mile or more journey from Cuba to Florida. By Christine Armario. UPCOMING: 1,500 words by 1700 GMT, photos. An abridged version also will move.


ELIZABETH, N.J. — The fumes, reeking of gasoline, poured from the white Kia SUV when an emergency medical technician broke a rear window. Inside, the body of a dark-haired young woman with a beauty mark on her left cheek reclined in the driver’s seat. Who was she? And how had her life had ended here, in a convenience store parking lot? A first clue: She was wearing a familiar white-and-brown Dunkin’ Donuts uniform. By that night, she’d been identified as Maria Leonor Fernandes, who worked minimum wage jobs at three doughnut shops, often grabbing an hour or two of sleep in her car between shifts. Soon, she was mourned as a tragic victim of our times; she became fodder for online commentary and the impetus for a “call to action” by a union leader. Friends, however, recall her life in three dimensions: She was kind, perhaps too generous, and loved to talk. Her adoration of Michael Jackson was intense. Yes, Fernandes worked hard and died tragically, but they insist she was no martyr. By National Writer Adam Geller. SENT: 2,750 words, photos. Abridged version also moved.


LOS ANGELES — For over 1 million Californians, the Nov. 4 election is over. That’s because they’ve already voted. A growing throng of early voters in the nation’s most populous state — perhaps half of all votes to be cast in California’s general election — has stretched Election Day into weeks. Candidates who wait until the end to close the deal with voters will be too late. The midterm elections are just over a week away and California is one of more than 30 states in which some form of advance voting is shaping the way campaigns must be conducted. In some rural areas of the state, 8 in 10 ballots cast could come through the mail. By Michael Blood. SENT: 800 words, photos.


ROME — A Roman villa’s wine cellar, which was converted into an air raid shelter for Benito Mussolini and the Italian dictator’s family, is opening its anti-gas, double steel doors to tourists. By Frances d’Emilio. SENT: 300 words, photos.


OTTAWA, Ontario — The Ottawa Senators and New Jersey Devils participated in an emotional pregame ceremony Saturday night to honor slain soldiers Cpl. Nathan Cirillo and Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent. SENT: 460 words.


— GERMANY-ISLAMIC EXTREMISTS — The number of Islamic extremists in Germany is growing rapidly, the head of the country’s domestic intelligence agency says. SENT: 270 words, photo.

— ISRAEL-US — A top Israeli minister says there is a “crisis” in in the country’s relations with the United States that must be fixed. SENT: 140 words.

— BRITAIN-OBIT-BRUCE — British musician Jack Bruce, best known as the bassist from the 1960s group Cream, dies. SENT: 840 words, photos.

— HAWAII VOLCANO — A growing lava stream threatening homes and inching closer to a rural road on Hawaii’s Big Island oozes forward in fits and starts. SENT: 500 words, photos, video.





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