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Death toll climbs in tropical storm

GUATEMALA CITY - The death toll in Central America rose to 83 from landslides and flooding triggered by the first tropical storm of the year, as authorities struggled Sunday to clear roads of debris and reach cut-off communities.

Torrential rains that pounded southern Mexico and Guatemala eased as rivers continued to rise and word filtered out from isolated areas of more deaths in landslides.

Although no longer even a tropical depression, Agatha still poses trouble for the region: Remnants of the storm were expected to deliver 10 to 20 inches of rain over Mexico, Guatemala, and parts of El Salvador, creating the possibility of flash floods and mudslides.

As of Sunday afternoon, 75,000 people in Guatemala had been evacuated, many to shelters. At least 3,500 homes sustained major damage.

- AP

Colombia winner now faces runoff

BOGOTA, Colombia - A former defense minister promising to build on President Alvaro Uribe's security gains has convincingly won Colombia's presidential elections but is headed for a runoff with a maverick outsider.

With 98 percent of voting stations reporting, Juan Manuel Santos had 47 percent against 21 percent for Antanas Mockus, a former two-time Bogota mayor who pledged clean government in a country plagued by endemic corruption.

The two will meet June 20.

Although generally peaceful, Sunday was marked by nearly two dozen clashes with leftist rebels that claimed the lives of at least three soldiers, a potent reminder that Colombia's half-century-old conflict is far from resolved.

- AP

Terror ruled out in Libyan crash

TRIPOLI, Libya - A commission investigating a plane crash this month in the Libyan capital that killed 103 people have found no evidence of terrorism or mechanical failure, the state news agency said Sunday.

The Afriqiyah Airways jet plunged into the desert May 12. A 9-year-old Dutch boy was the only survivor.

The commission determined that the navigational aids at Tripoli's airport were functioning normally and that the plane did not run out of fuel, JANA news agency said.

The panel also said there was no explosion or fire on the aircraft. The crew also made no mayday call. The plane's cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder have been sent to Paris for review.

- AP


Chinese authorities executed a man convicted of slashing 29 children and three teachers with a knife in one of a series of recent assaults on schools and kindergartens. The attacks have left 17 dead and more than 50 injured.

Bangladesh has blocked the social-networking website Facebook over a page urging people to draw images of Islam's Prophet Muhammad, joining Pakistan in banning the popular site over religious concerns.