New meningitis vaccine for Africa

OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso - Health workers will use a new vaccine to protect 20 million people in three West African countries against meningitis, a disease that kills thousands each year on the continent and leaves others brain-damaged, officials said Monday.

Meningitis, an infection of the lining that surrounds the brain and spinal cord, strikes more than 20 countries in sub-Saharan Africa.

A new vaccine developed specifically for use on the continent was approved in June and is being rolled out in three of the hardest-hit countries: Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger.

Health officials have lauded the campaign, saying the vaccine could stop deadly outbreaks in the region before they begin. In Burkina Faso alone, the World Health Organization said about 10,000 health workers would vaccinate 12 million people by the end of the year. - AP

U.S. shark experts headed to Egypt

CAIRO, Egypt - Egypt's Chamber of Diving and Watersports said Monday that three shark experts from the United States were heading to Egypt to help try to explain what was behind an unusual series of shark attacks that have killed one tourist and injured three others in the last week.

Shark attacks at Egypt's Red Sea resorts are rare. The attacks at Sharm el-Sheikh, on the southern tip of the Sinai peninsula, are believed to involve one oceanic whitetip shark. Whitetips normally do not approach beaches.

Some theorize that illegal fishing could be driving sharks closer to shore for food.

The chamber said the visiting experts included George Burgess, director of the Florida Program, and Marie Levine, the head of the Shark Research Institute in Princeton. - AP

Clashes in Greece mark 2008 riots

ATHENS, Greece - Youths hurled rocks and petrol bombs at police Monday during clashes at a student rally marking two years since the fatal police shooting of a teenage boy that sparked Greece's worst riots in decades.

At least five people were injured and more than 40 youths were detained by police.

Sporadic violence lasting more than six hours occurred in several parts of central Athens after about 4,000 people marched to Parliament to commemorate the death of Alexandros Grigoropoulos, 15, in 2008.

The 2008 rioting was the worst civil unrest that Greece had seen in decades, with youths rampaging through cities almost nightly for two weeks. - AP

Elsewhere:

A motorboat overloaded with Haitian migrants slammed into a reef Monday off the British Virgin Islands and capsized as it tried to evade authorities. Five people were killed, including two infants. The 30-foot boat was carrying more than 30 people when it struck the reef off Tortola.

Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner announced her country's recognition of Palestine as a "free and independent state." Argentina's decision Monday follows a similar announcement by Brazil on Friday.

Armed commandos attacked two drug rehabilitation centers in the Mexican border city of Ciudad Juarez, killing four people and wounding five Sunday, officials said.