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US to announce 2 new marine sanctuaries; Chile moving to protect waters near Easter Island

VALPARAISO, Chile President Barack Obama will declare new marine sanctuaries in the tidal waters of Maryland and Wisconsin’s Lake Michigan Monday, while Chile is expected to block off a more than 200,000 square miles of sea from commercial fishing and oil and gas exploration in an area of the Pacific Ocean near the world-famous Easter Island.

Syrian activists: Islamic State militants destroy ancient Arch of Triumph in Palmyra

BEIRUT Syrian activists said late Sunday that Islamic State militants have destroyed a nearly 2,000-year-old arch in the ancient city of Palmyra, the latest victim in the group’s campaign to destroy historic sites across the territory it controls in Iraq and Syria.

Bush says ending ban on US oil export, easing natural gas barriers, key to economic growth

DES MOINES, Iowa Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush says ending the ban on U.S. oil exports and easing restrictions on natural gas exports will unleash the nation’s economy.

The former Florida governor is calling for ending the 1970s-era law prohibiting the U.S. from exporting crude oil at a time when domestic petroleum production has grown rapidly over the past decade.

Stone-faced Obama and Putin spar at the UN over Syria: Assad must go - or stay

U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin sharply disagreed Monday over the chaos in Syria, with Obama urging a political transition to replace the Syrian president but Putin warning it would be a mistake to abandon the current government.

Pope wraps up US visit with huge open-air Mass in Philadelphia, meets with sex-abuse victims

PHILADELPHIA Pope Francis urged hundreds of thousands of the faithful gathered Sunday for the biggest event of his U.S. visit to be open to “miracles of love,” closing out his joyful six-day trip with a message of hope for families, consolation for victims of child sexual abuse and a warning to America’s bishops.

Gunmen abduct 2 Canadians, Norwegian and Filipino from Philippine island resort

MANILA, Philippines Gunmen abducted two Canadians, including a former mining company executive, a Filipino woman and the Norwegian marina manager at an upscale resort complex on a southern Philippine island, sparking an air and sea search by authorities, officials said Tuesday.