NEW DELHI - Thousands of troops searched through the densely forested stronghold of Maoist rebels in eastern India on Monday for those who ambushed a convoy of ruling party officials and supporters, killing 24, police said.
The attack in Chhattisgarh state showed that the Maoists still have the ability to strike, even at heavily guarded convoys, despite claims by the government that it has greatly weakened a guerrilla insurgency it termed the nation's greatest internal security threat.
"There are hills, rivers and dense forests, and the population is very sparse. Searching these areas is very difficult," said Ram Niwas, a top state police official. The federal government rushed in 2,000 paramilitary troops to reinforce the 30,000 troops already stationed in Chhattisgarh, the Press Trust of India news agency reported.
The ambush Saturday came after a relative break in Maoist violence. While smaller skirmishes have occurred over the last three years, the Maoists' last major attacks in Chhattisgarh were in 2010, including their bloodiest-ever attack, in which they ambushed a paramilitary patrol and killed 76 troops.
MEXICO CITY - The government said Monday that it has created a special investigative unit to search for missing people.
Attorney General Jesus Murillo Karam said the unit would include 12 federal investigators and a group of federal police agents as support. It will be part of the Attorney General's Office.
Karam said the special unit would guarantee that the same investigators and forensic experts remain on cases until they are solved.
Authorities said last week that they were working on creating a single database of the missing and that the number of disappeared could be a lot less than the 26,121 included in a list put together by the prior administration and made public earlier this year.
SANTIAGO, Chile - Chilean and Argentine officials issued a red alert Monday for the increasingly active Copahue volcano bordering the two countries and ordered the evacuation of about 3,000 people.
Chilean Interior and Security Minister Andres Chadwick said the increased activity could lead to an eruption and officials would soon begin evacuating 2,240 people, or 460 families, within a 15.5-mile radius.
"This evacuation is obligatory; it's not voluntary," Chadwick said. Chile's Emergency Office said the evacuation could last about 48 hours, but could be delayed because of heavy rains.