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National Radio 8am Bulletin

Taiwan Arms Sale – Southern Drought – Air New Zealand Hiring – Blood Money – Community Services Card – South Africa – ANZAC Day – Antarctic Rescue – Turkey Hunger Strike - Monteiths

TAIWAN ARMS SALE: US President George Bush says the US will do whatever is necessary to defend Taiwan. Beijing has launched a diplomatic protest over a US arms sale to Taiwan. George Bush has delivered China a message in public intentionally say commentators.

SOUTHERN DROUGHT: Many farmers in Marlborough are having to buy in feed and sell off breeding stock due to a prolonged drought. Several days of steady rain is needed.

AIR NEW ZEALAND HIRING: Air New Zealand says it is keen to hire up to 500 Qantas NZ staff made redundant by the collapse of the airline.

BLOOD MONEY: The Ministry of Health is promising to fund a big increase in the cost of blood products. At least $10 million of the required $16 million has already been found.

COMMUNITY SERVICES CARD: The Government is under pressure from within its own ranks over a decision not to raise the threshold for the Community Services Card and the cheap health care it entitles recipients too. The PM has agreed to meet the Greens over the issue.

SOUTH AFRICA: South Africa’s Police Minister has warned the ANC about a plot to oust President Thabo Mbecki. Three senior popular members of the ANC are accused of the plot. Mr Mbecki has been accused of using the state to pursue

ANZAC DAY: The Foreign Minister Phil Goff says the ANZAC spirit is alive and well at Gallipoli with more people than ever visiting for commemorations.

ANTARCTIC RESCUE: A plane has taken off from the South Pole with a sick doctor on board. This is the first ever winter flight from the pole.

TURKEY HUNGER STRIKE: More people have died in Turkey’s prisons where protests are being held over prison conditions. Amnesty International says up to 1000 political prisoners have been on an extended hunger strike.

MONTEITHS: An advertising campaign to show West Coasters how to differentiate between a Monteiths beer brewed on the coast, and one brewed in Auckland, has started today. Brian Blake of DB says the campaign is endangering negotiations over the future of the Greymouth brewery.

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