China: Safety chief resigns
BEIJING The head of China's food safety watchdog resigned Monday for failing to stop the widespread contamination of baby formula as the number of children sickened in the scandal soared to nearly 53,000, including four infants who died. The shake-up came as investigators revealed that China's biggest producer of powdered milk, Sanlu Group Co., had received complaints as early as December 2007 linking its infant formula to illnesses in babies.
France: Afghan mission OK'd
PARIS France's Parliament authorized the government Monday to continue its military commitment in Afghanistan, and the prime minister pledged 100 extra troops following a deadly ambush there last month. The vote came amid controversy over the killings of 10 French soldiers in the ambush by insurgents east of the Afghan capital Aug. 18. It was the biggest single combat loss for international forces in Afghanistan in more than three years.
Algeria: Al-Qaida warning
ALGIERS The leader of al-Qaida in North Africa has called for Muslims to unite in holy war against the region's governments and issued new threats against Western targets, including France, Spain and the United States. The message decried a "new colonial offensive" by the West in North Africa and warned Muslims not to back the local "regimes of apostasy and treason." It was signed by Abu Musab Abdul Wadud, the pseudonym used by Abdelmalek Droukdel, the leader of al-Qaida's North African offshoot.
New Zealand: Broadcast tussle
WELLINGTON New Zealand's government has asked officials to review whether there is fair competition between companies for access to major sporting events. The government has been assessing feedback on a discussion paper and has now decided on a program to tackle the problems. Any new regulations may affect Sky Network Television Ltd., New Zealand's biggest pay-TV operator, which has exclusive rights to broadcast major sports events such as All Black rugby tests.
Mexico: Raid survivor exiled
MEXICO CITY Mexico's attorney general says investigators have found no evidence that a Mexican student who survived a Colombian military raid on a rebel camp in Ecuador had ties to the guerrillas. The March 1 cross-border attack killed a top commander of the leftist rebels and 24 others, including four Mexican university students. The surviving student is exiled in Nicaragua because of Mexico's investigation.
Canada: Bus attack charges
WHITE RIVER, Ontario Police charged a man Monday with an attack on a Greyhound bus in northern Ontario that left a passenger hospitalized, just weeks after a man was accused of stabbing and beheading a fellow traveler on a Greyhound. David Roberts, 28, was charged Monday with aggravated assault and breach of probation in the latest attack. Police said the 20-year-old victim remained hospitalized.
U.N.: Africans on defensive
UNITED NATIONS African leaders warned Monday that a lingering global financial crisis coupled with the collapse of talks on a world trade agreement could significantly harm the U.N. campaign to improve life for hundreds of millions of the world's poorest. But the head of the 53-nation African Union said that if rich nations really care, they will keep helping Africa in spite of the financial meltdown.