8 Die in gas explosion in Argentina

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Eight people died and 63 others were injured in a gas explosion inside a 10-story apartment building in the central Argentine city of Rosario, authorities said.

Rosario municipal prosecutor Gabriela Argüelles, confirmed the death toll, which could rise given that there are still people missing who could be buried in the ruins.

The health minister for Santa Fe province, Miguel Angel Cappiello, said that the injured are being treated at four different hospitals around the city.

The explosion occurred about 9:40 a.m. and could be heard more than 40 blocks away, witnesses said. The shockwave from the blast caused damage to neighboring buildings.

The cause of the explosion was "an incredible (gas) leak," Rosario Mayor Monica Fein told the media.

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27 Die in series of attacks in Iraq

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At least 27 people died and more than 100 were wounded in a series of attacks around Baghdad, Iraqi police told Efe.

One of the deadliest explosions occurred in a popular market of the Al Nahruan neighborhood, where eight people died and another 21 were injured, the source said.

Another car bomb exploded in the Al Daura area on the capital's south side, causing the death of five people and leaving another 17 wounded.

Five more civilians were killed and 18 were injured when a car blew up near Al Hurria Square in downtown Baghdad.

Another target of a car bomb attack was a popular market in the northeastern neighborhood of Al Zaleba, where five people died and another 13 were wounded.

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George W. Bush undergoes heart surgery

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Former U.S. President George W. Bush is hospitalized in Dallas after successfully undergoing heart surgery to clear an artery, his spokesman said.

"At the recommendation of his doctors, President Bush agreed to have a stent placed to open the blockage," Freddy Ford said.

"The procedure was performed successfully this morning, without complication, at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital," the spokesman said in a statement.

Bush, 67, is "in high spirits" and eager get home, Ford said.

The problem was detected Monday during Bush's annual medical exam at the Cooper Clinic in Dallas, the city where he has lived since leaving the White House in 2009.

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Washington urges U.S. citizens to leave Yemen

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The U.S. government urged all American citizens to leave Yemen immediately and recalled all non-essential U.S. official personnel from the Arab nation.

"The Department urges U.S. citizens to defer travel to Yemen and those U.S. citizens currently living in Yemen to depart immediately," the State Department said in a message posted on its Web site.

"On August 6, 2013, the Department of State ordered the departure of non-emergency U.S. government personnel from Yemen due to the continued potential for terrorist attacks," the statement continued.

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Mexican president resumes public activities after operation

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Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, who underwent surgery last week, resumed his public activities as he presided over a small-business event in Mexico City.

At his first public activity since a July 31 procedure to remove a benign thyroid tumor, the president appeared in good health and gave without difficulty an almost 20-minute speech to inaugurate Entrepreneur Week.

Peña Nieto, 47, observed until Tuesday a period of rest and recuperation between the Central Military Hospital and Los Pinos, his official residence.

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Brazilian gov't takes down death squad

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Brazil's Federal Police arrested 18 people in a crackdown on an extermination squad that operated in Natal, capital of the northeastern state of Rio Grande do Norte.

The suspects, who include 11 state and municipal police officers, have been linked to 22 homicides and five attempted homicides, Federal Police spokespersons said.

Besides targeting drug dealers, the death squad engaged in murder-for-hire and killings of witnesses, according to federal authorities.

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India protests to Pakistan over Kashmir attack

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India filed a strong diplomatic protest with Pakistan over the attack that killed five Indian soldiers in the disputed region of Kashmir.

"The ambush was carried out by approximately 20 heavily armed terrorists along with persons dressed in Pakistan Army uniforms," Defense Minister A.K. Antony told Indian lawmakers.

An army patrol was attacked in the Poonch area, near the Line of Control, or LoC, which divides Kashmir into Indian- and Pakistani-ruled portions, authorities in New Delhi said.

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Insurgents in Pakistan kill 13 bus passengers

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Insurgents hijacked a bus near the southwestern town of Mach, killing 13 passengers, a Pakistani police officer told Efe.

"The terrorists attacked a frontier guard checkpoint late last night, killed one officer and then stopped a small bus and kidnapped its 20 passengers," Mohammed Iqbal said.

On Tuesday morning, police found the bodies of 13 of the passengers shot to death in a ditch, while the other seven people "are safe and sound," Iqbal said.

Mach is located about 50 kilometers (31 miles) south of Quetta, the capital of Baluchistan, Pakistan's largest and poorest province.

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EFE