TIJUANA, Mexico – American tourists on an annual July 4 fishing trip were plunged into the Gulf of California in the middle of the night after a flash storm upended their boat, killing at least one U.S. man and leaving seven others missing.
Mexican officials on Monday were considering calling off the search for survivors and turning their efforts to recovering bodies after rescuing 19 tourists and all 16 crew members, who clung to coolers, rescue rings and life vests for hours before some were discovered by other fishing boats as they tried to swim to shore.
At least 20 injured in Syria crackdown
Syrian security forces opened fire Monday in a restive central city, injuring a 2004 Olympic boxing champion and at least 20 others as President Bashar Assads regime swept through several cities and towns to crush a pro-democracy uprising, activists said.
Nasser al-Shami was in stable condition after being hit by shotgun pellets in the city of Hama, said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
Meanwhile, the U.N. Security Council plans to meet next week to discuss Syrias refusal to cooperate with an investigation of its alleged secret nuclear activities, diplomats told The Associated Press.
Disaster minister quits over remarks
After only a month on the job, Japans disaster reconstruction minister submitted his resignation Tuesday after making offensive remarks during a visit to the earthquake-devastated northeast coast over the weekend.
Ryu Matsumoto appeared arrogant and uncaring, angering local residents and political opponents. He told the governor of Iwate, one of the hardest-hit prefectures, that the government would not help municipalities that did not have good ideas about rebuilding.
In Miyagi prefecture, Matsumoto refused to shake Gov. Yoshihiro Murais hand and scolded the visibly surprised governor because he was not in the room when Matsumoto arrived.
Chavez back home, will skip parade
Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez made a surprise return from Cuba early Monday after cancer treatment. Smiling as he stepped off a plane, he hugged his vice president, broke into song and later raised a fist in triumph.
However, doubts about his future re-emerged as he suggested that he still isnt ready for a full comeback.
He told state television by telephone that he doesnt expect to attend celebrations today marking the 200th anniversary of Venezuelas independence from Spain. Normally, Chavez, 56, would be front and center at the patriotic event, which includes a military parade.
Unity is goal for Thailand’s leader
Thailands election winner moved quickly Monday to shore up her partys already-resounding victory, forming a ruling coalition with four smaller parties and vowing to pursue national reconciliation after five years of instability and political violence over the military coup that ousted her brother.
Yingluck Shinawatra, who will become Thailands first female prime minister, said her priority would be how to lead the country to unity and reconciliation.
The military declared acceptance of the sweeping electoral win of Yinglucks pro-Thaksin Pheu Thai Party.