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AP Top International News at 2:16 a.m. EDT

US officials: Navy 7th Fleet commander to be removed
TOKYO (AP) -- The commander of the Navy's 7th Fleet will be removed after a series of warship accidents in the Pacific this year, two U.S. officials said Wednesday....

Warming Arctic spurs battles for riches, shipping routes
LANCASTER SOUND, Nunavut (AP) -- From a distance, the northern shores of Baffin Island in the Arctic appear barren - a craggy world of snow-capped peaks and glaciers surrounded by a sea of floating ice even in the midst of summer....

Fighting North Korea with balloons, TV shows and leaflets
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) -- Some send up plastic leaflets that weigh less than a feather and flutter down from the clouds with calls for democracy or blurry cartoons ridiculing North Korea's ruler. Some send flash drives loaded with South Korean soap operas, or mini-documentaries about the vast wealth of Southern corporations, or crisp new U.S. dollar bills. One occasionally sends his empty food wrappers, stained labels showing noodles slathered in meat sauce, so Northerners can see the good life they'd find in the South....

Iran extends reach with fight for land link to Mediterranean
BEIRUT (AP) -- Thousands of Iranian-backed fighters in Syria's central desert region are advancing east, bringing Tehran closer to its goal of securing a corridor from its border, through Iraq and all the way to the Mediterranean and providing it unhindered land access to its allies in Syria and Lebanon for the first time....

No guarantee of residence for migrants fleeing US for Canada
MONTREAL (AP) -- Men and women with furrowed brows sat in pews alongside their children at a Montreal church as volunteers explained what to expect now that they have crossed into Canada from the United States seeking asylum....

North Korea photos suggest new solid-fuel missile designs
TOKYO (AP) -- North Korea's state media released photos Wednesday that appear to show the designs of one or possibly two new missiles....

Suspect says imam planned to blow himself up in Barcelona
MADRID (AP) -- An extremist cell was preparing bombs for an imam who planned to blow himself up at a Barcelona monument, a key suspect in the attacks that killed 15 people in northeastern Spain told a judge Tuesday, according to a judicial official....

Italian boy credited with helping save brother after quake
MILAN (AP) -- An Italian family of five was "reborn" after all three children buried in the rubble of their home by a 4.0-magnitude quake were pulled to safety Tuesday in a painstaking 16-hour rescue operation on the popular Mediterranean resort island of Ischia....

4 accidents, 2 deadly, raise questions about Navy operations
BANGKOK (AP) -- One major U.S. Navy collision may be an accident. Twice in two months could be a coincidence. Or it could point to a bigger failing in how the U.S. navigates its warships around the world....

Dozens killed in airstrikes on Syrian city of Raqqa
BEIRUT (AP) -- Syrian state media and opposition activists said Tuesday that airstrikes on the northern city of Raqqa have killed dozens of civilians....

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World Video
Up to the Minute
5 killed in landslide in West African nation of Guinea

Air New Zealand says result strong despite drop in profit

Warming Arctic spurs battles for riches, shipping routes

Latin America/Caribbean
Journalist killed in Mexico at least 9th this year

Middle East
Iran extends reach with fight for land link to Mediterranean