Tokyo — Japan's Transport Ministry ordered inspection Thursday of the tail section of all Boeing 747s flown by Japanese airlines. Preliminary evidence in a joint US-Japanese probe of Monday's crash of a Japan Air Lines jet, the worst single-plane crash in history, indicated the crash was caused by a structural failure in the tail. Three pieces of the section were found in Sagami Bay, outside Tokyo, indicating that they had come off the plane well before the crash.
Also Thursday, lawyers for Japan Air Lines said the company is likely to reach out-of-court settlements with the four survivors and families of the 520 victims of the crash.
Murphy meets Israeli leader on outlook for joint talks
US Assistant Secretary of State Richard W. Murphy met with Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres, who hoped to dissuade him from plans to talk with a joint Jordanian-Palestinian delegation, Israeli officials said.
Israeli leaders have publicly criticized US plans for a possible meeting between Mr. Murphy and a joint Jordanian-Pales- tinian delegation, which would likely focus on a new Middle East peace plan.
Israel is concerned that such a meeting could lead to backhanded US recognition of the Palestine Liberation Organization, which Israel considers a terrorist group.
Gandhi, Assam State leaders OK steps to end conflict
Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi announced a settlement yesterday to end a violent 6-year-old conflict that has pitted residents of Assam state against 1 million Bengali immigrants from Bangladesh. The agreement was signed with Assam student leaders who had been seeking disenfranchisement and deportation of the mostly Muslim immigrants. The government agreed to permanently disenfranchise all illegal aliens who entered Assam after the Bangladesh war of independence in 1971. The students originally sought expulsion of all immigrants who settled in Assam since 1961.
Radio tower for US forces in W. Germany hit by bomb
A bomb exploded here yesterday, damaging a radio tower used by a US armed forces radio network, a military spokesman said. No one was hurt in the second bomb attack against American forces in West Germany in a week.
Iraq claims it demolished Iran's key oil terminal
Iraq said yesterday its jet fighters demolished Iran's main Kharg Island oil export terminal in the Persian Gulf. There was no immediate comment from Iran, and the Iraqi report could not be verified independently. But maritime sources in the region said their radios had picked up reports of unusual air activity from vessels outside the war zone.
Iraq has vowed to choke off Iran's economy by blocking its oil exports.
Blast in Kentucky union hall believed linked to coal strike
A bomb blast shook a United Mine Workers union hall Wednesday, breaking windows and knocking pictures off the walls, and labor leaders said they think it was related to strikes in the coalfields. About 850 of the district's members are involved in selective strikes against companies that haven't signed the union's national contract. Officials were investigating the bombing, but reported no suspects. No one was injured in the blast.
Hurricane Danny hits western Louisiana
The eye of Hurricane Danny hit land yesterday with torrential rain and wind gusts above 90 m.p.h. after more than 30,000 people were evacuated from offshore drilling rigs and towns as far south as Galveston, Texas, officials said. Gale winds and flash floods were expected all along the Louisiana coast, including New Orleans, about 125 miles east. Gale warnings and a hurricane watch were posted from the mouth of the Mississippi to Pensacola, Fla.
Hormel meatpackers reject offer and plan to go on strike
Union meatpackers at Geo. A. Hormel & Co. rejected the company's final offer Wednesday and said they would stage the plant's first strike in 52 years at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, local time. Union members had protested that the Austin plant's contracts were ``substantially inferior'' to contracts at other Hormel plants, criticizing a lower wage scale for workers hired after Sept. 1 and provisions strengthening management rights over matters such as job assignments and transfers.
Taiwanese finance minister resigns over bank scandal
Taiwan's finance minister, Loh Jen-kong, resigned yesterday, taking responsibility for the nation's biggest bank scandal, a government spokesman said. The spokesman said Premier Yu Kuo-hwa had accepted the resignation and appointed Mr. Loh's deputy, Li Hung-ao, as acting minister.
New Sudanese leader to visit US next month
Sudan's military ruler, Gen. Abdel Rahman Swaraddahab, will visit the United States and the Soviet Union sometime next month for talks, Egypt's Middle East News Agency reported Thursday.
Tunis says Libya is expelling Tunisian citizens over politics
Tunisia said Thursday that nearly 10,000 of its nationals had been expelled by Libya in what Western diplomats say is primarily an angry gesture by Muammar Qaddafi over the pro-Western policies of his North African neighbor.
Miami mayor cracks down on Interstate highway robbers
Mayor Maurice Ferr'e clamped down Thursday on highway robbers along Interstate 95, ordering crews to cut out trees to set up television cameras and step up police patrolling in trouble spots. Mr. Ferr'e's crackdown on highway crime came four days after Gov. Bob Graham declared war against attackers, when the number of robberies reported on the city's highways had shot to 93.
Tanzanian vice-president chosen to succeed Nyrere
Vice-President Ali Hassan Mwinyi was chosen Thursday to succeed President Julius Nyerere, one of Africa's elder statesmen, who steps down this year after leading his country since independence in 1961. Mr. Mwinyi had been viewed as the least likely of three leading contenders to succeed the widely respected Mr. Nyerere.
3rd `killer bee' colony destroyed in California
A third colony of ``killer bees'' has been destroyed seven miles southwest of their first known nest in the United States, state officials said yesterday.
Hwan meets opposition chief to avert showdown on dissent
South Korean President Chun Doo Hwan met the leader of the main opposition party Thursday in an effort to head off a political showdown over a government bill designed to crack down on campus dissent. The proposed legislation -- called unconstitutional by the opposition -- includes provisions for a maximum seven-year prison term for people supporting student disturbances and for up to six months of ``reorientation'' at an education camp, without trial, for student radicals.