** NTSB: Ill-Fated Asiana Jet's Landing Gear Hit Seawall in SF**
U.S. government investigators say the landing gear of the Asiana Airlines jet that crashed Saturday at San Francisco airport hit a seawall at the end of the runway, sending the fuselage skidding down the airfield.
The chairwoman of the National Transportation Safety Board, Deborah Hersman, told a news conference in San Francisco Tuesday that seconds before the crash, the pilots on board tried to correct the plane's speed and elevation.
Two Chinese schoolgirls were killed and about 180 of the more than 300 people on board were injured when the Boeing 777 crashed-landed.
Information from the plane's flight data recorder shows the plane was traveling far too slowly as it came in for a landing. Hersman declined to speculate on the cause of the crash, but much of the information released by the NTSB suggests pilot error as a main focus of the investigation.
**US Urged to Get Tough With China During Annual Talks**
Human rights groups and lawmakers are urging the Obama administration to take a tough stance Wednesday during annual high-level talks with Chinese officials in Washington.
Secretary of State John Kerry and Treasury Secretary Jack Lew are heading the U.S. delegation at the Strategic and Economic Dialogue. The Chinese side is represented by State Councilor Yang Jiechi and Vice Premier Wang Yang.
The dialogue, now in its fifth year, is a regular opportunity for Washington and Beijing to discuss, and sometimes square off on, issues of both cooperation and disagreement between the world's two largest economies.
Ahead of the two-day talks, there were calls for the U.S. to prominently raise concerns about China's human rights record - a particularly sensitive topic for Beijing.
New York-based Human Rights Watch says the U.S. should hold China accountable for what it calls a "lack of progress" on areas, such as its treatment of government critics, restrictions on free speech, and policies in ethnic areas.
A bipartisan group of top U.S. lawmakers also called for the U.S. to press China on a wide range of economic issues, including protecting intellectual property and ensuring that China opens its markets up to further foreign competition.