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Top of the Morning: North Korea Nuke Test; Turkey Border Bombing; TDR-TB in South Africa

Top stories from DAWNS Digest.

North Korea Conducts Nuclear Test

After weeks of threats, it appears DPRK has gone ahead.  North Korea on Tuesday conducted an underground explosion of what it called a “miniaturized” nuclear weapon, testing a technology that could theoretically be paired with a long-range missile to threaten the United States. Pyongyang confirmed the test nearly three hours after unusual seismic activity was detected near the secretive police state’s mountainous test site. The test follows weeks of threats from the North to build up its nuclear capacity and carry out an “all-out action of high intensity…”The test is the first under new North Korean leader Kim Jong Eun and the clearest sign that the third-generation leader, like his father and grandfather, prefers to confront the United States and its allies rather than make peace with them. (WaPo http://wapo.st/VQO3Oj)

Death Toll Climbs at Syria-Turkey Border Bombing

A deadly minibus blast on Turkey’s border with Syria was meant to target a Syrian National Council opposition delegation, the group said on Tuesday, but the Turkish authorities said it was too early to apportion blame. The minibus, bearing Syrian number plates, exploded at a crossing on the border near the Turkish town of Reyhanli on Monday, killing 14 people and wounding dozens more. “This is a terrorist act. We are working on several alternatives. It was probably carried out by a Syrian.” (Reuters http://reut.rs/VQOojR)

Totally Drug Resistant TB Discovered in South Africa

The deadliest form of the scariest global disease has been uncovered in South Africa. “A new paper published earlier this week in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Emerging Infectious Diseases journal warns that the first cases of ‘totally drug-resistant’ tuberculosis have been found in South Africa and that the disease is ‘virtually untreatable’…Patients are rarely tested for a particular strain of tuberculosis, so it’s unclear how prevalent TDR is worldwide. Major health organizations have yet to even define the parameters necessary for a case of tuberculosis to be considered TDR. Bishai says van Helden’s paper suggests that “TDR is extensive in South Africa.” “It’s gone relatively unrecognized,” he says. “This is evidence that it’s emerged and is spreading—we’re playing with fire here.”  (US News and World http://bit.ly/YmNnLB)


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