9 still missing after tourist boat sinks in Colombia

GUATAPE, Colombia (AP) — Scuba divers on Monday continued their search for bodies from a submerged boat in Colombia as authorities turned their attention to what led the tourist ferry to sink with more than 150 passengers on board, leaving at least seven people dead and nine missing.

Prosecutors were treating the wreckage site at the Guatape reservoir outside Medellin as a crime scene and looking for any clues as to whether the company that owned the boat named El Almirante was negligent.

Dramatic videos circulating on social media show the turquoise-and-yellow-trimmed party boat rocking back and forth as people crawled down from a fourth-deck roof. Survivors described hearing a loud explosion near the men’s bathroom that knocked out power a few minutes after the boat began its cruise around the giant lake. As water flooded on board, pressure built and people were sucked under by the sinking ship

The tragedy Sunday would’ve been even deadlier if not for the quick reaction of recreational boats and jet skis who rushed to the scene to pull passengers from the fast-sinking vessel.

Residents of the normally festive town laid flowers at a monument overlooking the lake as family members of those missing waited for word on their loved ones.

Top Russian and US
diplomats discuss
cease-fire for Syria

MOSCOW (AP) — The top diplomats of Russia and the United States have focused on the Syrian crisis in a phone call.

The Russian Foreign Ministry says Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson talked Monday about the need to secure a cease-fire in Syria, fight extremist groups and to prevent the use of chemical weapons.

It added that Lavrov “urged Washington to take steps to prevent provocations against Syrian government forces battling terrorists.”

Moscow reacted angrily when the U.S. downed a Syrian jet last week after it dropped bombs near the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces conducting operations against the Islamic State group.

Russia warned its military would track aircraft from the U.S.-led coalition as potential targets over Syria and suspended a hotline intended to avoid mid-air incidents.

Israel: Projectile from Gaza lands in southern Israel

JERUSALEM (AP) — The Israeli military says a projectile fired from the Gaza Strip has landed in southern Israel.

The military said Monday the projectile fell in an open area and no one was hurt.

The attack broke a period of relative calm and raised the possibility of Israeli retaliation.

Israel holds Gaza’s Hamas rulers responsible for all fire out of the seaside strip — even rockets launched by any of the various militant groups challenging Hamas.

Israel and Hamas have fought three wars since the Islamic militant group took control of Gaza a decade ago, most recently in 2014. A cease-fire has largely held since then.

UK’s May makes deal she needs to govern, but critics abound

LONDON (AP) — Prime Minister Theresa May forged a deal with a Northern Ireland party Monday that should give her struggling minority government enough votes to get her agenda endorsed, but at a high cost: more than 1 billion pounds in new funds for Northern Ireland and resentment from Britain’s other regions.

The deal May struck with the Democratic Unionist Party was needed because of her Conservative Party’s dismal performance in a June 8 election. The massive injection of funds her government pledged in exchange angered the leaders of Scotland and Wales, as well as Northern Ireland’s other parties.

The package includes 1 billion pounds ($1.27 billion) of new funding and 500 million pounds ($638 million) of previously announced funds to help Northern Ireland develop its infrastructure, health services and schools.

It should allow May to win backing in coming days for the Brexit-dominated agenda announced in the Queen’s Speech that marked the opening of a new Parliament last week.

Subway digging uncovers ‘Pompeii-like scene’ in Rome

ROME (AP) — Digging for Rome’s new subway has unearthed the charred ruins of an early 3rd-century building and the 1,800-year-old skeleton of a crouching dog that apparently perished in the same blaze that collapsed the structure.

Archaeologists on Monday said they made the discovery on May 23 while examining a 10-meter (33-foot) -deep hole bored near the ancient Aurelian Walls as part of construction work for the Metro C line.

“A Pompeii-like scene” was how the Culture Ministry described the findings that evoked comparisons to the inhabitants trapped by the 79 A.D. Vesuvius volcanic explosion and preserved for centuries in the ruins of Pompeii.

Experts say the Rome ruins might be from an aristocrat’s home at the foot of the nearby Celian Hill or from a nearby military barracks, which itself had been explored in other excavations for the subway line.

Dali’s bones to be exhumed in Spain for paternity test

MADRID (AP) — A Spanish judge on Monday ordered the remains of artist Salvador Dali to be exhumed to settle a paternity suit, despite opposition from the state-run foundation that manages the artist’s estate.

Dali, considered one of the fathers of surrealist art, died in 1989 and is buried in his museum in the northeastern town of Figueres.

Pilar Abel, a tarot-card reader from the nearby city of Girona who was born in 1956, says she is the offspring of an affair between Dali and her mother, Antonia.

At the time of the alleged affair, Dali was married to his muse, Gala, who died seven years before the painter. Gala had a daughter from an earlier marriage but the couple had no children of their own. Upon his death, at age 84, Dali bestowed his estate to the Spanish state.

On Monday, a Madrid court statement said that tests with DNA from Dali’s embalmed body were necessary because there were no other existing biological remains with which to make a genetic comparison.