A gas leak triggers an earthshaking explosion that flattens two apartment buildings, killing at least three people, injuring more than 60 and leaving nine missing. A tenant said residents had complained repeatedly in recent weeks about "unbearable" gas smells. By Jonathan Lemire and Jake Pearson. AP Photos.
NEW YORK -- An Indian diplomat whose arrest and strip-search spurred an international flap has charges against her dismissed by a federal judge. By Jennifer Peltz. AP Photos.
WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama declares that the U.S. would "completely reject" a vote in Crimea opening the door for the strategic Ukrainian peninsula to join Russia if the election goes ahead. By Julie Pace and Bradley Klapper. AP Photos.
WASHINGTON -- Ukraine's prime minister says his country "will never surrender" its independence in the face of a threat that its strategic Crimea region could withdraw from the nation and potentially join Russia. By Lara Jakes.
WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama expresses a glimmer of hope that a referendum on the future of Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula can be halted, as he met with the new leader of the former Soviet republic. By Julie Pace and Bradley Klapper. AP Photos.
SAN MIGUEL, Argentina -- Gonzalo Mosca was a radical on the run. Hunted by Uruguay's dictatorship, he fled to Argentina, where he narrowly escaped a military raid. Finally his priest brother put him in touch with the man he credits with saving his life: Jorge Mario Bergoglio. The future Pope Francis has been criticized for keeping silent about abuses by Argentina's military. But survivors such as Mosca increasingly have come forward to say they owe him their lives. By Debora Rey. AP Photos.
CARACAS, Venezuela -- A university student, a National Guard captain and a third man are shot to death in separate incidents as anti-government protests roil the central Venezuelan city of Valencia. Three guardsmen and several protesters are wounded. By Jorge Rueda and Fabiola Sanchez. AP Photos.
WASHINGTON -- Anti-abortion lawmakers in the U.S. are urging allies to support one of their own to run for the White House. By Philip Elliott.
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti -- The lead defense attorney for Haiti's former dictator Jean-Claude Duvalier says judges will be responsible for a "civil war" if an appeals court rules against his client. By Trenton Daniel.
STUDENT SUES PARENTS
ROSELAND, New Jersey -- The teenage student who sued to get her parents to support her after she moved out of their home has reunited with them, and the family is now asking for privacy. By Samantha Henry. AP Photos.
LAZARO CARDENAS, Mexico -- The recently killed leader of the Knights Templar drug cartel had been hiding out in a wood hut in the mountains and people in the area tipped off security forces to its existence, a Mexican official says. By E. Eduardo Castillo.
WINNEMUCCA, Nevada -- Humboldt County Sheriff Ed Kilgore is defending the practice of stopping suspected drug traffickers on U.S. Interstate 80 and confiscating tens of thousands of dollars even if no criminal charges are filed. By Scott Sonner.
SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador -- The top commanders of El Salvador's armed forces says they will stay out of a presidential election dispute that pits a conservative candidate against a former leader of the leftist rebels the army fought in a 12-year civil war. By Marcos Aleman. AP Photos.
SAN FRANCISCO FIRE
SAN FRANCISCO -- San Francisco fire investigators are looking into whether welding work was to blame for a huge blaze that tore through an apartment building construction site, threatening nearby buildings, prompting evacuations and forcing officials to call in about half the city's on-duty firefighters to prevent its spread. By Terry Collins and Sudhin Thanawala. AP Photos.
DRUG RAID-HORSE TRACK-BRIBERY
AUSTIN, Texas -- Three Mexican citizens plead guilty to attempting to bribe a federal judge who was hearing a case on how the Zetas drug cartel laundered money by trading in American racehorses. By Chris Tomlinson.
FIRST AMENDMENT AWARDS
WASHINGTON -- The Radio Television Digital News Foundation is presenting its First Amendment Award to The Associated Press for defending press freedoms against secret government subpoenas for reporters' phone calls. Journalists for Gannett, NBC, ABC and CBS were also cited by the foundation for their efforts to protect a free press. By Jennifer C. Kerr.
ARGENTINA-LIFE IN BUENOS AIRES-PHOTO GALLERY
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina -- Argentines have suffered through a tough summer, with intensifying the heat and humidity from tropical rains, rolling power blackouts and soaring oil and gas prices. The strain is evident on the faces of subway riders and others making their way home in Buenos Aires. With photo gallery by Rodrigo Abd. SENT: 260 words, photos.
BUSINESS & FINANCE:
TRENTON, New Jersey -- A U.S. court on invalidates the key patent for one of Pfizer's most lucrative medicines, potentially opening the door for cheaper generic versions 18 months sooner than expected and cutting into the drugmaker's profit. By Linda A. Johnson.
DETROIT (AP) -- General Motors excluded the Saturn Ion from a Feb. 13 recall for faulty ignition switches after engineers inexplicably failed to look at fatal crashes involving the compact car. By Tom Krisher. AP Photos.
REDMOND, Washington -- Microsoft Corp. has appointed Mason Morfit, the president of activist investment firm ValueAct Capital, to its board of directors. Morfit has pushed for Microsoft to focus on its enterprise software products and cloud computing business rather than its flagship Windows computer operating system, which is being hurt by the declining sale of PCs.
PORTLAND, Oregon -- Herbalife Ltd. is facing an inquiry from the Federal Trade Commission, the nutrition and supplement company says as its shares initially plunged more than 12 percent following a brief halt in trading pending the announcement. By Sarah Skidmore Sell.
SWISS BANKS-TAX EVASION
ALEXANDRIA, Virginia -- A former Swiss banker pleads guilty to his role in a fraud scheme that prosecutors say helped U.S. taxpayers hide as much as $3 billion in assets from the IRS, the U.S. tax collector. By Matthew Barakat.
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT:
NEW YORK -- Rob Thomas knew he might make movie history by using Kickstarter to crowd-fund his "Veronica Mars" film. But he wasn't prepared for the posters. Of all the prizes offered to donors of "Veronica Mars" the most taxing was autographing the cast-signed posters promised to more than 5,000 backers. By Jake Coyle. AP Photos.
MIAMI -- A lawyer wants Justin Bieber to return to Florida so he can ask more questions about the pop singer's ex-girlfriend, Selena Gomez, as part of a photographer's lawsuit against Bieber and his bodyguard.
SAO PAULO -- More than two-thirds of the World Cup matches are sold out less than three hours after FIFA opens new ticket sales. By Tales Azzoni. AP Photo.