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IN BRIEF: 'Syringe' teen stabs 37 pupils

A 14-YEAR-OLD girl in Puerto Rico has gone on a playground rampage with a hypodermic needle, stabbing 37 classmates.

"She would stab one, run, stab another, run, like it was some sort of joke," education secretary Jesus Rivera Sanchez said about the attack on pupils aged 12 to 14 at the school in the town of Arroyo.

The victims gathered at a convention centre to be tested for HIV and hepatitis C and to be given preventive medications.

Penn gets $2m for Haiti homes

The Haiti aid group run by Hollywood actor Sean Penn says it has received $2.25m (d1.6m) to help more than 500 families displaced by last year's earthquake move back home.

Benjamin Krause from Penn's relief group J/P HRO says the money from the World Bank will be used for rent subsidies, repairs to houses and building new homes and solar-powered water kiosks.

The project is part of a $95m effort financed by the World Bank and Haiti Reconstruction Fund.

Girl's message in bottle found

A sailor participating in a beach clean-up in Hawaii found a message in bottle that had been dropped in the ocean more than five years ago by a girl in Japan.

Jon Moore stumbled upon the clear glass bottle at the Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai. Inside, he found a note from Saki Arikawa, four origami flowers, and a photo of Arikawa's sixth grade glass in Kagoshima.

The note was dated March 25, 2006. It read, "I wrote this letter because we'll graduate elementary school so I wanted it to be a graduation memory."

2,200 held in China swoop

China's tough security body says it has arrested nearly 2,200 people as part of a nationwide crackdown on gang-related crime.

A report posted on China's Ministry of Public Security website says police in 11 regions have arrested 2,182 suspects and uprooted 270 gangs since September 1. A campaign last year broke up more than 1,500 mafia-style gangs.