U.S. agrees to delaynew Iraq sanctions
WASHINGTON -- The United States and its allies are willing to postpone for up to six months a U.N. decision on restructuring sanctions against Iraq to give Russia more time to study proposed changes.
U.S. officials, however, said they are hopeful Moscow's review can be completed in one month.
Secretary of State Colin Powell cited "general agreement" among members of the U.N. Security Council that sanctions "have lost some of their effectiveness."
"It is wise to move forward," he said, speaking with reporters as he flew home late Wednesday from a NATO meeting in Budapest.
Powell expressed optimism that agreement on a new sanctions package could soon be reached.
While in Budapest, Powell conferred separately with foreign ministers of Britain, France and Russia. With the United States, these nations represent four of the five permanent members of the Security Council.
China, the fifth member, was not directly involved in the talks. Each of the five permanent members has veto power.
National spelling beecontinues in D.C.
WASHINGTON -- Spelling words isn't supposed to be a physical sport, but try telling that to Gregory Abbracciamento, 13, of Robbinsville, N.J., one of 178 spellers to advance to the second round of the 74th Annual Scripps Howard National Spelling Bee Wednesday.
When asked to spell "separability," the home-schooled Abbracciamento spelled it "seperability," then flinched, gritted his teeth and threw his head back upon hearing he'd gotten it wrong. Separability means "the state or quality of being separable."
The next speller, Sarah Berling, 13, of Albuquerque, N.M., sighed and looked at the ceiling when pronouncer Alex Cameron, a professor of English at the University of Dayton, asked her to spell "inadequacy." Berling got the word, which means "the quality or state of being inadequate," correct.
Seventy spellers out of 248 total were ousted during the first round Tuesday. Spellers are split into two groups until this morning. Roughly half of the remaining spellers took the stage Wednesday morning and 17 were eliminated in the second round and 31 were eliminated in round three.
Police: 6-year-old beatbrother to death
ROCHESTER, N.Y. -- A 6-year-old boy reportedly killed his 3-year-old brother by beating him with a baseball bat during a ballgame, police said.
A funeral was held for the toddler Wednesday, the same day police said they would not charge the elder boy because of his age. No charges were pending against any adults.
The boy was found dead May 21. The older brother reportedly retaliated with the baseball bat when the boy threw a stone at him. Police said none of the other players, all children between the ages of 6 and 10, intervened.
"First, he used a brick to hit the boy in the lower body. The sibling then struck the 3-year-old in the abdomen and back with a wooden baseball bat using over-the-head strikes to the back and abdomen," Police Chief Robert Duffy told the Democrat & amp; Chronicle newspaper.
Police have not determined whether an adult was present.
After the beating, the toddler returned home but became lethargic and fell asleep on the sofa. He was found dead in bed the next morning.
His brother has been put in foster care and will undergo mental health tests.
PARADISE, Wash. -- A high-altitude helicopter plucked four climbers and their five rescuers off Mount Rainier on Wednesday evening, two days after the climbers lost gear in an avalanche.
The mountaineers walked off the Army Reserve Chinook helicopter and were taken to a ranger station for debriefing. Nobody was hurt.
Crews got a break late Wednesday from snow and poor visibility that had prevented rescue of the four climbers and five national park rangers.
The nine were airlifted from the 13,900-foot level near Liberty Cap, one of the smaller summits on the 14,411-foot peak, said Maria Gillett, Mount Rainier National Park spokeswoman.
Park officials identified the climbers as leader Dylan Scoville-Simonds, 24, of Seattle, and James Fishburn, Alton Willoughby and Mike Schiller, who were believed to be from the Seattle area.
All were experienced mountaineers. Scoville had twice climbed to the summit, officials said.
Liberty Ridge, on Mount Rainier's north flank, is considered one of the most challenging climbs on the peak, and it is usually attempted only by experienced climbers.