Sky News Melbourne bureau chief Ahron Young said the vial was part of a package from a “jihadist group” sent to an office this morning, later confirmed to be the New Zealand Herald.
It arrived with a letter claiming that the liquid was a sample of Ebola. It was understood that the mailroom was evacuated and the staff were hosed down.
According to a tweet sent by the Herald, the vial was originally sent to the mailroom, but “all precautions were taken.”
The Herald Sun and the New Zealand Herald both report that the delivery is a suspected hoax, but the sample has been sent to Melbourne’s specialist Victorian Infectious Diseases Reference Laboratory to determine if it contains the killer disease.
Auckland police said a small amount of liquid in a plastic bottle had been sent to the Herald office in a suspicious package along with some documents, one of which mentioned Ebola.
As a precaution, police sent the bottle to be swabbed for DNA and checked for fingerprints before being sent to Melbourne for testing. Results are expected within days.
Health officials who attended assured the small number of staff who worked in the mailroom that the risk of contamination was almost non-existent.
“Police are often called to deal with and investigate the origins and contents of suspicious packages,” Detective Inspector Scott Beard said.
“The vast majority of them turn out to be benign, but we don’t take any chances. This is no exception.”
Herald owner NZME confirmed that an unaddressed package was sent to the paper’s Auckland offices.
“Protocol was followed for a matter such as this and it is now a police matter,” a spokesperson said. http://nypost.com/2014/11/10/jihadist-group-sends-newspaper-vial-of-ebola-virus/