MACHU PICCHU, Peru -- The famed Inca citadel of Machu Picchu reopened to tourists Thursday after a two-month closure due to floods that washed out the rail link to the mountaintop ruins.
Actress Susan Sarandon was on hand for an ancient ceremony asking for the blessing of mother Earth and other rituals, including the sounding of an Incan welcoming trumpet.
Peru's No. 1 tourist site had been shut down since late January, when heavy rains disrupted the rail link from the city of Cuzco and trapped some 4,000 tourists, many of whom had to be rescued with helicopters.
Medvedev asks police to use 'cruel' measures
MAKHACHKALA, Russia -- President Dmitry Medvedev made a surprise visit Thursday to the violence-wracked southern province of Dagestan, telling police and security forces to use tougher, ''more cruel'' measures to fight the ''scum'' responsible for terrorist attacks.
Russia's security chief said some terror suspects had been detained.
Twin suicide bombings in Moscow -- which Islamic militants from the North Caucasus claim to have carried out -- have refocused attention on the violence that for years has been confined to Russia's predominantly Muslim regions. The rush-hour attacks Monday on the Moscow subway killed 39 people and left nearly 90 hospitalized.
Brazil says top Amazon activist shot, killed
BELEM, Brazil -- A top activist for land reform in Brazil's Amazon has been murdered, police said Thursday.
Pedro Alcantara de Souza, who headed a union of landless farmers in Para, was shot in the head five times by two men on motorcycles, according to a police spokesman in the town of Redencao.
The killing came hours after a delay in the trial of a man accused of masterminding the slaying of another rain forest activist, American nun Dorothy Stang, who was shot and killed in 2005 in notoriously violent Para state.
Watchdog groups say conflicts between powerful ranchers and poor farmers over land rights have led to 1,200 murders across Brazil in the last 20 years.
In only one of those killings -- Stang's -- is the alleged mastermind now behind bars. About 80 of the gunmen are in jail.