Zoo fire in Germany kills dozens of animals
After midnight on New Year’s Day, a fire started at the Krefeld Zoo in Germany killing at least 30 animals. Local officials stated that the fire burned down the monkey enclosure and may have been caused by flying lanterns. The zoo wrote on their Facebook page that two apes, “chimpanzees Bally and Limbo miraculously survived the devastating fire.” According to Karin Kretzer, a spokeswoman for the North Rhine-Westphalia Police Force in Krefeld, flying lanterns are forbidden in Germany, yet are sometimes used in New Year’s Eve celebrations. Three lanterns have been found near the scene of the fire.
Tuberculosis vaccine made more powerful through new injection method
While running tests on primates, researchers made an unusual discovery in regards to vaccinations for tuberculosis. On Wednesday, Jan. 1, scientists from the University of Pittsburgh and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases found that nine out of 10 monkeys exposed to large doses of live tuberculosis germs were protected when vaccinated by injection into a vein rather than injection under the skin. The New York Times stated that “several tuberculosis experts not involved in the study said they were impressed by the results, although they warned that much more testing of the idea’s safety and practicality remains to be done.”
Hong Kong protesters return to the streets
After nearly a month of quiet, protesters returned to the streets of Hong Kong on Wednesday, Jan. 1 continuing the protest of the Fugitive Offenders amendment bill introduced by the Hong Kong government. According to The New York Times, “A peaceful New Year’s Day march descended within a few hours into violent clashes. Riot officers deployed water cannons and pepper spray [while] protesters built barricades out of umbrellas and paving stones [vandalizing] at least two branches of [HSBC,] a leading bank in the city.” Xi Jinping, China’s top leader, has permitted a degree of public protest in Hong Kong and in his New Year’s Day address stated, “Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability is the wish of Hong Kong compatriots and the expectation for the people of the motherland.”
Photo: J. Chan