CANBERRA, Australia (AP) - Police and firefighters were called
to Australia's parliament on Monday after security officers found a
magazine containing a suspicious white powder, officials said.
Security staff cordoned off the entrance to the Senate as police
and the fire brigade arrived. Police took the powder away for
testing.
"We have a white-powder incident," Parliament House deputy
security controller Shane Stroud said.
Fire Service district officer Ron Weston said the powder was
found inside a magazine that had been circulated through some
offices in the building.
Weston said the risk level was very low but authorities had to
be certain the magazine did not contain a substance such as
anthrax. Those who came into contact with the magazine had been
isolated, he said.
Two officers in protective yellow clothing retrieved the
magazine and then showered in a portable unit set up outside the
Senate entrance.
Earlier this year security officers also called authorities when
a large envelope containing white powder was delivered to the
office of Australia's finance minister, Treasurer Peter Costello.
Tests found the powder to be harmless.