USA

Renewing his campaign to open Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil exploration, President Bush said Saturday this initiative was a vital part of his plan to make the US less dependent on foreign energy sources. But overturning the 1980 ban on drilling in the area is certain be a hard sell in the Democrat-controlled Senate, where debate on an energy bill is expected to begin this week. It likely will face a filibuster by legislators who say drilling would have serious environmental consequences. The House version, passed last summer, permits drilling in a 1.5 million-acre section of the refuge.

Controversy surrounded Spain's triple gold medalist Johann Muehleggearly Sunday, when he was summoned to appear before the International Olympic Committee's disciplinary committee after testing positive for a blood-boosting substance. The team doctor, who attended the meeting, said Muehlegg should learn later in the day whether a second test was positive. As the Monitor went to press, Spain's sports minister said the substance detected "did not appear on the list of banned substances as such." Above, Muehlegg celebrates his third gold medal of the Games after winning the 50- kilometer cross-country event Saturday. (Related story, page 1.)

Also putting a dimmer on the final day of the Games, Salt Lake City police in riot gear used foam-tipped bullets to scatter an unruly crowd outside a downtown beer garden. More than 30 people were arrested. Police said the clash began when Bud World, set up for Olympic festivities, became too crowded and people spilled onto Main Street, just blocks from the medals plaza.

The US ended its 46-year Olympic medal drought in men's bobsledding, winning both the silver and bronze in the four-man race Saturday. The gold medal went to Germany.

Two small airports near Washington, reopened Saturday for the first time since Sept. 11, leaving only one US airport still closed since the terrorist assaults on the US. The Federal Aviation Administration gave airports within a 15-mile radius of the Washington Monument the green light to resume limited operations, provided undisclosed security restrictions are met. Washington Executive/ Hyde Field has yet to meet those standards, but airport officials said they hope to pass the federal check by the end of the week.

Hundreds of volunteers at the weekend joined the search for a missing 7-year-old San Diego girl after the arrest of a neighbor and the discovery of bloodstained evidence lent grim urgency to the task of finding her. The foothills and desert east of the city were scoured for any sign of Danielle van Dam. Her parents, Damon and Brenda van Dam, were encouraged by the arrest Friday of their neighbor and urged volunteers to continue helping with the 22-day search.

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