Morning News Briefs and Tuesday's Forecast

Posted: July 9, 2013

Winchester-Area Weather: A 60 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms throughout the day today and a high in the upper 80s. Mostly cloudy and a slight chance of showers tonight. Lows near 70. A 60 percent chance of rain and an afternoon thunderstorm on Wednesday, highs in the upper 80s. Cloudy with showers and thunderstorms Wednesday evening with lows in the upper 60s.

Morning News Briefs from the Associated Press for Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Egypt army kills at least 50 in Cairo clashes
CAIRO (AP) — Egypt was rocked by its deadliest day since its Islamist president was toppled by the military, with more than 50 of his supporters killed by security forces as the country's top Muslim cleric raised the specter of civil war. The military found itself on the defensive after the bloodshed, but the interim president drove ahead with the army's political plan. He issued a swift timetable late Monday for the process of amending the Islamist-backed constitution and set parliamentary and presidential elections for early 2014.

Congress divided on using aid to pressure Egypt
WASHINGTON (AP) — While the Obama administration throws its support behind Egypt's military, some members of Congress are looking at withholding some or all of America's annual $1.5 billion aid package if a civilian government isn't quickly restored. Without the administration's support, that's a high hurdle. But after watching the violence spiral in recent days in Cairo and elsewhere, more lawmakers are questioning whether the Egyptian military's ouster of Mohammed Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood-led government last week must be defined as a "coup" and how the U.S. should leverage the only significant element of influence it has in Egypt.

Women in Ohio kidnap case thank public for support
CLEVELAND (AP) — Three women held captive in a Cleveland home for a decade issued a YouTube video Monday night in which they thanked the public for the encouragement and financial support that is allowing them to restart their lives. Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight broke their public silence in the 3-minute, 30-second video posted at midnight. They said the support and prayers of family, friends and the public is allowing them to rebuild their lives after what Berry called "this entire ordeal."

Captain of wrecked cruise ship on trial in Italy
GROSSETO, Italy (AP) — The trial of the captain of the shipwrecked Costa Concordia cruise liner has begun in a theater converted into a courtroom in Tuscany to accommodate all the survivors and relatives of the 32 victims who want to see justice carried out in the 2012 tragedy. The sole defendant, Francesco Schettino, his eyes shaded by sunglasses and slipping in through a back door, made no comment to reporters as he arrived for his trial Tuesday on charges of multiple manslaughter, abandoning ship and causing the shipwreck near the island of Giglio.

Focus on earlier blaze in Quebec train derailment
LAC-MEGANTIC, Quebec (AP) — Investigators searching for the cause of a fiery oil train derailment that wiped out a small town's center and killed at least 13 people zeroed in on an earlier blaze on that same train, and the possibility that the series of actions that followed it might have somehow caused the locomotive's brakes to fail several hours later. Inspectors, meanwhile, searched for remains in the derailment's devastated epicenter after finally being cleared to enter the area late Monday — almost three days after the disaster. A total of 50 people were missing, including the 13 unidentified victims, and the death toll was sure to rise.

Pilot interviews key to answers in SFO crash
SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (AP) — Asiana Airlines Flight 214 was 500 feet up and about a half-minute from San Francisco International Airport when its speed dropped below the threshold for a safe landing speed. It continued slowing until just about 8 seconds before touch down when pilots recognized the need for more speed and throttled up. But it already was too late. By the time the engines started adding speed, the hulking Boeing 777 was barely above San Francisco Bay and the plane clipped the seawall at the end of the runway, slammed down and spun, then caught fire. Incredibly, only two of the 307 people on board died, and most of the survivors suffered little or no injuries.

Role of aircraft automation eyed in air crash
WASHINGTON (AP) — The crash landing of a South Korean airliner in San Francisco has revived concerns that airline pilots get so little opportunity these days to fly without the aid of sophisticated automation that their stick-and-rudder skills are eroding. The National Transportation Safety Board, which is investigating the accident, is a long way from reaching a conclusion as to its probable cause. While the focus of their investigation could still shift, information released by the board thus far appears to point to pilot error.

Explosion rocks Hezbollah stronghold in Lebanon
BEIRUT (AP) — A large explosion rocked a stronghold of the Shiite militant Hezbollah group south of the Lebanese capital Tuesday, setting several cars on fire, sending a thick plume of black smoke billowing into the sky and wounding at least 15 people, security officials said. The powerful blast in a bustling commercial and residential neighborhood came as many Lebanese Shiites began observing the holy month of Ramadan, and is the worst explosion to hit the area in years — direct fallout of the civil war raging in neighboring Syria.

Service honors 19 firefighters killed in Ariz fire
PHOENIX (AP) — The bodies of 19 elite Hotshot firefighters haven't been left alone since they were pulled from a charred Arizona mountainside last week. It's a tradition among the close-knit crews everywhere to stay by the fallen until they're handed off to families for burial. Thousands of firefighters from around the nation are now expected to attend a memorial service for the men to pay final respects on Tuesday at a minor league hockey arena in Prescott Valley, not far from where they died Sunday, June 30.

Singer Randy Travis in critical condition in Texas
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Country music singer Randy Travis was listed in critical condition a day after being hospitalized in Texas with heart problems. A news release from the singer's publicist says the 54-year-old Travis was admitted to the hospital Sunday in Dallas and was in critical condition Monday evening.