News briefs for Nov. 16

Published 11:43 pm Saturday, November 15, 2008

G20 Leaders seek detection plan

WASHINGTON — World leaders at an emergency economic summit are moving to sharpen detection of risky investing and regulatory weak spots, hoping to avoid future financial meltdowns like the one now threatening the global economy.

In the largest gathering of its kind here in nearly a decade, President George W. Bush and some two dozen foreign leaders were to meet Saturday behind closed doors as they prepared to adopt an action plan for more openness in financial markets and an early warning system for problems like the speculation frenzy that fed the U.S. housing bubble.

10 militants killed in strike in Afghanistan

KABUL, Afghanistan — A strike by coalition troops against a bomb-making cell in eastern Afghanistan killed 10 militants, the U.S. military said Saturday.

The troops were targeting several key figures in a network run by Jalaluddin Haqqani, a militant leader believed to operate out of Pakistan, the military said in a statement.

Several groups of armed militants fired on the coalition troops during the operation Friday, according to the statement. The coalition forces returned fire, killing their attackers and destroying a weapons cache.

Obama interviews ex-rivals Clinton and Richardson

WASHINGTON — President-elect Barack Obama is interviewing some of his one-time political opponents as he ponders building his own “team of rivals” to help him run the country.

Primary election foes Hillary Rodham Clinton and Bill Richardson both have been interviewed for secretary of state, according to several Democratic officials who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the secret meetings.

Wildfires ravage homes in northern LA

LOS ANGELES — Fierce winds on Saturday fanned a wildfire in northern Los Angeles that quickly spread across neighborhoods, burning several homes and threatening dozens others, while firefighters to the west in Santa Barbara County battled a blaze that had destroyed more than 100 homes.

The fire in the foothill community of Sylmar on the edge of the Angeles National Forest broke out late Friday and charred over two square miles in three hours, prompting officials to order hundreds of residents to leave their homes.

Space shuttle Endeavour races toward space station

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — Space shuttle Endeavour raced toward the international space station on Saturday for a home makeover job after a brilliant moonlit launch that had NASA managers in awe.

The shuttle and its seven astronauts blasted into orbit Friday night on a mission to redo the insides of the space station, adding some extra bedrooms and a spare bathroom and kitchenette.