USA

On the heels of participating in the 34-nation Summit of the Americas in Argentina, President Bush made his first visit to Brazil, sitting down Sunday with his counterpart, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. "It's in our interest that we work with the largest country in our neighborhood," Bush said. Brazil's government was one of five at the summit that voted not to move forward with talks on a US- favored Western Hemisphere free-trade zone. Besides trade issues, the two leaders were expected to discuss the fight against drug-trafficking and Brazil's lead role in UN peacekeeping in Haiti.

A tornado that developed in a line of fast-moving thunderstorms early Sunday killed at least 15 people and injured 160 others in southwestern Indiana, 10 of them in a mobile home park in Evansville. Thousands of customers lost power.

A six-week "intelligent design" trial, which considered the place of alternative instruction to evolution in public school science classes, ended Friday in Harrisburg, Pa., and the federal judge in the case said he expects to issue a ruling in the next two months. The suit was brought by eight families who object to a requirement that public school students be exposed to the intelligent design concept. The plaintiffs view that as an attempt to inject a literal reading of the Bible into science lessons and as a violation of constitutional separation of church and state.

The Seabourn Spirit, a cruise ship based in Miami, changed course Saturday after coming under fire from pirates off the East African coast and outrunning them. The attackers, who fired rocket-propelled grenades and machine guns from two inflatable boats, did not get close enough to board the ship, which sustained minor damage. None of its 151 passengers - mostly Americans - and only one crew member was injured.

Louisiana lawmakers began a two-week special session in Baton Rouge Sunday that will address 77 hurricane-related issues. Rewriting building codes and changing the way unemployment benefits are calculated are among topics Gov. Kathleen Blanco (D) has placed on the agenda. On Saturday, she cut $431 million from state agency budgets for the 2005-2006 fiscal year.

Death-row inmate Charles Victor Thompson was declared a federal fugitive Saturday after a brazen escape from the Harris County, Texas, jail, as he awaited transfer to a state prison. Investigators said they believe Thompson, who was convicted for the shooting deaths of his ex-girlfriend and her boyfriend, had help in walking out of a courthouse wearing a change of clothes. A $10,000 reward has been offered for information leading to his capture.

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