Council debates plan for Mideast observers
With time running out before a key meeting of Arab leaders this week, the U.N. Security Council huddled Saturday to debate a Palestinian demand for U.N. observers to help end six months of clashes with Israel. The closed-door meeting focused on proposed Palestinian changes to a watered-down European resolution. Diplomats were trying to reach middle ground before the Arab summit in Jordan on Tuesday.
The U.S., Israel's biggest ally on the council, has threatened to veto a resolution backing the creation of a U.N. force because Israel opposes the measure. U.S. officials fear a veto could spark more violence between the Palestinians and Israel and infuriate oil-rich Arab countries, whose support they need to shore up sanctions against Iraq and Afghanistan.
14 killed when bus plunges off highway
A tour bus careened off a highway in northern Portugal and rolled down a steep ravine Saturday, killing 14 passengers and injuring 24 others, six of them seriously. The bus came off a highway near Santa Comba Dao, a town about 120 miles north of Lisbon, about 8 p.m. Most of the passengers, returning to the city of Viseu after a day trip to a Roman Catholic shrine at Fatima, were more than 50 years old but included a 13-year-old girl, cable news channel S.I.C. said.
Tourist plane crash kills 20 people
A small plane crashed on the Caribbean island of St. Barts on Saturday, killing all 19 people on board and one person on the ground, authorities said. A man was killed when the Twin Otter propeller plane crashed into his house in a field nearby. His wife was in the hospital with serious injuries. The 17 passengers were mostly French tourists. There were also two crew members on the plane.