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Palestinians celebrate pact

JERUSALEM — Rival Palestinian factions celebrated the signing of a reconciliation pact they hope will end their four-year split and accelerate efforts to form an independent state.

But the agreement faces fierce opposition from Israel, complicates American-led efforts to forge a peace agreement between the Israelis and Palestinians, and still must overcome lingering distrust between the two factions: the moderate, secular Fatah party in the West Bank and the militant Islamist group Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip.

Relatives hold vigil for coal mine workers

SAN JUAN DE SABINAS, Mexico — Stunned and saddened relatives held a vigil Wednesday outside a mine in northern Mexico where nine workers were trapped and possibly dead following an explosion that killed at least five of their colleagues.

Rescuers used picks, shovels and their hands to tunnel through dirt, wood, metal and rock in a frantic effort to reach the miners trapped 197 feet underground in the northwestern state of Coahuila.

Recovery team finds body in plane crash

SAO PAULO — A French recovery team is reportedly pulling up the remains of one of the victims of an Air France jet that crashed two years ago off Brazil's northeastern coast.

Nelson Marinho heads the Brazilian victims' family association. He told the Associated Press that rescuers planned to use an underwater robot Wednesday to recover the remains and to determine if it is feasible to retrieve others.

He says a French government liaison sent an e-mail Wednesday advising families of the effort.

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