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More dead on Japanese volcano...Intelligence gap...Australia boosts spy agency power

By The Associated Press | Posted - Oct. 1, 2014 at 2:50 a.m.



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OTAKI, Japan (AP) — A dozen more bodies have been found near the summit of a Japanese volcano that erupted Saturday, bringing the death toll now to 48. Searches resumed today at the ash-covered Mount Ontake (ahn-TAH'-kay) amid concern of toxic gasses and another eruption. Helicopters are bringing bodies down.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Current and former U.S. officials are pointing to an intelligence blind spot at the Pentagon as it bombs Iraq and Syria, prompting less restrictive targeting rules than the drone campaign in Pakistan and Yemen. The U.S. military says its airstrikes have been effective, but witnesses say they have at times hit long-vacated buildings. Rights activists say there have been civilian casualties. And the extremists are still on the offensive.

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia's domestic spy agency is becoming more powerful and there are renewed concerns about press freedom after Parliament approved new counterterrorism laws. The Australian Security Intelligence Organization gets greater search and surveillance powers. The legislation carries a potential 10-year prison sentence for anyone who discloses information that relates to a "special intelligence operation."

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House fence jumping isn't the only recent security breach. The Washington Examiner and The Washington Post report an armed security contractor with three convictions for assault and battery rode on an elevator with President Barack Obama and his security detail in Atlanta. That violation of Secret Service protocol wasn't mentioned by Director Julia Pierson during Tuesday's House hearing.

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) — Several buildings are still burning today just a block from the boardwalk in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The buildings caught fire late last night. Fire Chief Dennis Brooks tells the Press of Atlantic City two of the four buildings are partially collapsed. One family has been displaced but there are no injuries.

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The Associated Press

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