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Up to 500 are dead in fighting, U.N. says

Fighting in South Sudan has killed up to 500 people, U.N. diplomats said Tuesday, and the United Nations fears the violence is "largely along ethnic lines."

The United States ordered its citizens to leave South Sudan immediately.

The president of the world's newest country has blamed the violence on a coup attempt by soldiers loyal to his former deputy, who belongs to a different ethnic group.

As many as 20,000 people have taken refuge with the U.N. mission in the capital, Juba, the president of the Security Council, French Ambassador Gerard Araud, told reporters.

Araud said the council received only "patchy information" in a special briefing Tuesday evening by the U.N. peacekeeping chief, with the cause of the violence yet unknown.

- AP

Refugee-abuse probe

Italy's government on Tuesday promised an investigation into the treatment of migrants after a video was taken of naked refugees being hosed down and disinfected in cold weather at a holding center on the southern island of Lampedusa. The video, which aired Monday on television, showed a dozen male migrants who lined up in a warehouse, then stripped to be hosed down with a solution to treat scabies. One of the migrants told RAI that men and women had been disinfected this way a few days ago. - AP


Heat-wave blackouts

Argentina's power grid can't handle the heat. Power outages are plaguing Buenos Aires as temperatures soar above 95 degrees and everyone tries to turn on their air conditioners at once. Government critics say years of energy subsidies and price freezes have left the power industry unprofitable and it hasn't made improvements. - AP