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By Victoria Cavaliere NEW YORK (Reuters) - Emergency crews clearing debris from the site of two New York City apartment buildings leveled in a gas explosion four days ago said they expected to reach an underground area on Sunday where natural gas lines could reveal what caused the deadly blast. Firefighters and other emergency workers have been working around the clock to clear debris from the site, the New York City Fire Department said on Sunday. Investigators want to reach the front of the basements where gas pipes and meters are located to determine whether a natural gas leak led to the explosion and, if so, what caused the breach. "We'll have it all cleared so we can get to the basement to start our investigation," Fire Commissioner Salvatore Cassano said on Saturday.
Simferopol (Ukraine) (AFP) - 20:05 GMT - 'The turnout was 81.36 percent' - "The turnout was 81.36 percent," says the referendum commission chairman Mykhaylo Malyshev, AFP's Dario Thuburn reports from Crimea.
Yabrud (Syria) (AFP) - Syria's army and Lebanon's Hezbollah seized full control of rebel bastion Yabrud on Sunday, dealing the opposition a strategic blow in the Qalamoun region along the Lebanese border. An AFP reporter entered the town after the army declared it had captured the opposition stronghold north of Damascus, in a symbolic victory a day after the third anniversary of the outbreak of Syria's conflict. Exhausted Syrian soldiers sat in the streets after seizing the town in fierce clashes with the support of battle-hardened fighters from Lebanon's Shiite militant group Hezbollah and pro-regime militiamen. "It was a very difficult battle, possibly the most difficult we have faced," a soldier who identified himself as Abu Mohammed told AFP in Yabrud's central square between puffs from a water-pipe.