White Powder Sent To U.S. Embassies

RICIN scare : Capitol building with white powder and an envelope
CBS News Producer Charlie Wolfson wrote this story for CBSNews.com.
State Department Spokesman Robert Wood told reporters 15 embassies throughout Europe have received envelopes in the past several days which contained a suspicious white powder. In all of the field tests done so far the results were negative for harmful contaminents. The FBI is investigation the incidents, according to Wood.

Standard procedures to open the mail were used at each embassy and they include specific security safeguards. Wood said all embassies remained open for business. There have been reports that the suspicious substance in the envelopes was flour but Wood said he could not confirm that as a fact. He said only that it was a "white powder."

Among the American embassies receiving the suspicious envelopes were those in Bern, Berlin, Brussels, Madrid, Oslo, Copenhagen, Stockholm, Riga, Paris, Rome, Bucharest and The Hague.

A Senior State Department official told reporters that all of the letters received as of Tuesday, December 16th, were postmarked from Texas and that the letters had been sent by regular mail and had not come through the State Department's own mail facility.
By Charles Wolfson