U.S. women miscarried after Zika

Two U.S. women who contracted the Zika virus while traveling out of the country miscarried after returning home, and the virus was found in their placentas, a spokesman for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. Federal health officials have not previously reported miscarriages in American travelers infected with the virus. But there have been miscarriages reported in Brazil, the epicenter of a Zika epidemic.

Dozens of prison guards indicted

More than 40 prison guards and officers at nine different prisons in Georgia have been indicted on charges of accepting bribes and drug trafficking, the latest in a federal effort to crack down on contraband and criminal activity in the state's prisons. Since September, about 130 people have been indicted. The indictments say officers agreed to wear their uniforms during the drug transports to deter law enforcement interference.


States seek abortion method ban

Abortion opponents in Mississippi, West Virginia and several other states are filing bills to ban an abortion procedure commonly used in the second trimester that opponents describe as dismembering a fetus. The New York-based Center for Reproductive Rights, which represents abortion providers in legal fights, said banning the dilation and evacuation method of abortion is unconstitutional.

New York

5 arrested in deadly gas explosion

Police arrested five people and charged four of them with involuntary manslaughter in connection with a gas explosion that killed two people and rocked Manhattan last March, with prosecutors saying that the loss of life was the direct result of the greed of the building's owner.


Congress votes to bar Internet tax

Congress voted to permanently bar state and local governments from taxing access to the Internet, as lawmakers leapt at an election-year chance to demonstrate their opposition to imposing levies on online service. On a vote of 75-20, the Senate gave final approval to the bill, which would also revamp trade laws. The House approved the compromise bill in December. President Obama is expected to sign it.

Korean Peninsula

Tensions rise at factory park

South Korea cut off power and water supplies to a factory park in North Korea, officials said Friday, a day after the North deported all South Korean workers there and ordered a military takeover of the complex that had been the last major symbol of cooperation between the rivals. It is the latest in an escalating standoff over North Korea's recent rocket launch that Seoul, Washington and their allies view as a banned test of missile technology. The North said it was responding to Seoul's earlier decision to suspend operations at Kaesong as punishment for the launch.


Avalanche survivor dies

An Indian infantryman whose unlikely survival in an avalanche touched off celebrations across the country died at a military hospital in New Delhi. The soldier, Hanamanthappa Koppad, was buried for five days under 35 feet of ice on the treacherous Siachen Glacier, where Indian and Pakistani troops face one another from camps at elevations approaching 20,000 feet. Nine other soldiers were killed in the avalanche. Koppad was in critical condition from the moment he was retrieved, with multiple organ failure, pneumonia and catastrophic brain damage, his doctors said. Despite that, news channels trumpeted each health bulletin.

news services