Mortars hit near
Two mortar shells hit Syria’s capital Saturday near a hotel where international chemical weapons inspectors and United Nations staff are staying, state media and a hotel guest said.
In the north, clashes between rival rebel factions left nearly 50 gunmen dead in three days of fighting for control of neighborhoods in the city of Aleppo, an activist group said.
An 8-year-old girl was killed and 11 people were hurt in the blasts in the upscale Abu Roumaneh area of Damascus, the SANA news agency said. One shell fell near a school and the other on the roof of a building.
The girl was in her family car near the school when she was killed, said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based activist group monitoring the fighting.
The blasts damaged several cars and shattered nearby windows. One resident was seen sweeping debris on a sidewalk, near where twisted metal pieces from the wreckage had been heaped in a small pile.
The leader of Libya’s Muslim Brotherhood political party said Saturday that the country’s prime minister — who was briefly abducted by militia members earlier this week — has failed and needs to be replaced.
Mohammed Sawan, leader of Justice and Construction party, told The Associated Press in a telephone interview Saturday from Benghazi that the Libyan parliament is “seriously searching for an alternative” to Ali Zidan. Sawan said mismanagement by Zidan’s government might have led to “irresponsible actions” by individuals, referring to Zidan’s kidnapping.
Simmering tensions in Libya were enflamed by an Oct. 5 raid by U.S. special forces that snatched a Libyan al-Qaida suspect known as Abu Anas al-Libi off the streets of Tripoli and whisked him off to custody in a U.S. warship.
4 in family die
in house fire
A Long Island mother was overcome by smoke as she tried to save her three young children from a fast-moving fire, and everyone in the house died, authorities said Saturday.
The blaze, at a small home in Shirley, about 60 miles east of New York City, was reported by startled neighbors at about 10:15 p.m. Friday. Some mounted a rescue effort but were beaten back by heat and smoke.
Suffolk County police identified the victims as Jennifer McCusker, 41, her son Aidan Tarbell, 7, and her 2-year-old twins, Brendan and Ava Jane Mistretta.
McCusker was found holding one of the twins in a bedroom, police said.
Authorities said at a news conference Saturday that the fire appeared to have started in the living room of the single-story home. The cause, though, wasn’t immediately clear.
Baby born to couple
in nanny stabbing
A New York City couple who lost two of their children in an attack police blamed on their nanny has welcomed a baby boy.
Kevin and Marina Krim announced the news Friday on the Facebook page for the Leo and Lulu Fund.
The Krims say Felix Harrison was born weighing 8 pounds, 10 ounces. Everyone is healthy and happy.
The fund was created in memory of their 6-year-old daughter, Lulu, and 2-year-old son, Leo, who were found dead in their apartment Oct. 25, 2012. Their 4-year-old daughter, Nessie, wasn’t home at the time.
The fund raises money for children’s education. The family has also posted numerous memories of their children and described their grief there.
The nanny, Yoselyn Ortega, has pleaded not guilty to murder charges.