In brief | Nation & World, November 18, 2013


Boeing airliner crashes in Russian city of Kazan killing all 50 aboard

MOSCOW — A Boeing 737 jetliner crashed and burst into flames Sunday night while trying to land at the airport in the Russian city of Kazan, killing all 50 people aboard in the latest in a string of deadly crashes across the country.

The Tatarstan Airlines plane was trying to make a second landing attempt when it touched the surface of the runway near the control tower, and was “destroyed and caught fire,” said Sergei Izvolky, the spokesman for the Russian aviation agency.

The Emergencies Ministry said there were 44 passengers and six crew members aboard the evening flight from Moscow and all had been killed. Kazan, a city of about 1.1 million and the capital of the Tatarstan republic, is about 450 miles east of the capital.

The ministry released a list of the dead, which included Irek Minnikhanov, the son of Tatarstan’s governor, and Alexander Antonov, who headed the Tatarstan branch of the Federal Security Service, the main successor agency to the Soviet-era KGB.

Some Russian air crashes have been blamed on the use of aging aircraft, but industry experts point to a number of other problems, including poor crew training, crumbling airports, lax government controls and widespread neglect of safety in the pursuit of profits.

Lungs don’t die when you do, so experiment looks to aid transplants

The pair of lungs sits inside a clear dome, gently inflating as doctors measure how well they’ll breathe if implanted into a patient who desperately needs a new set.

It’s a little-known twist of nature — your lungs can live on for a while after you die. The air left inside keeps them from deteriorating right away as other organs do.

An innovative experiment now aims to use that hour-or-more window of time to boost lung transplants by allowing donations from people who suddenly collapse and die at home instead of in a hospital.

“There aren’t enough lungs. We’re burying them,” said Dr. Thomas Egan of the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, who is leading the project. “It turns out your lungs don’t die when you do.”

This is a new frontier for transplants.

Pakistan government to put ex-president on trial for treason

ISLAMABAD — Pakistan’s government plans to put former President Pervez Musharraf on trial for treason for declaring a state of emergency and suspending the constitution while in power, the interior minister said Sunday.

Musharraf, a former army chief, would be the first military ruler tried for treason in a country that has experienced three military coups in its 66-year history. He could face the death penalty or life in prison if he is convicted of treason, but some question whether the country’s powerful army actually will let that happen. Musharraf has maintained his innocence.

The government plans to send a letter to the Supreme Court on Monday asking that treason proceedings begin under Article 6 of the constitution, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said during a news conference. The government made its decision after an investigating committee formed under the direction of the Supreme Court collected enough evidence for a trial, Khan said.

Author Barbara Park, creator of smart-mouthed Junie B. Jones, dead at 66

NEW YORK — Barbara Park, a former class clown who channeled her irreverence into the million-selling mishaps of grade schooler Junie B. Jones, has died. She was 66.

Park died Friday after a long battle with ovarian cancer, according to a statement released Sunday by Random House Books for Young Readers. She was a longtime resident of Scottsdale, Ariz., where she lived with her husband, Richard, and raised two sons.

Starting in 1992, Park wrote more than 30 illustrated chapter books about the smart-mouthed girl with an ungrammatical opinion of everybody — her parents, her teachers, her friends and her classmate and enemy for life, May.

By wire reports