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News In Brief

November 22, 1985

Cape Town

The South African government gave its permission for black leader Nelson Mandela to see his lawyers today amid mounting speculation that he will be freed, his wife said yesterday. In the past few days the local press has reported speculation that Mr. Mandela, jailed for life in 1964 for sabotage and plotting revolution, would shortly be freed by the Pretoria government.

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Philippine leftist says truce possible with a new regime

Underground Philippine leftist leader Antonio Zumel said yesterday that communist guerrillas battling the government of President Ferdinand Marcos would consider a truce if a new administration took office after elections in February. Mr. Zumel, believed to be the chairman of the illegal National Democratic Front -- an umbrella organization of leftist groups -- did not raise the possibility of a truce with a Marcos-headed government should Mr. Marcos win.

Also Thursday, President Marcos swore in Ram'on C. Aquino as the country new chief justice, bypassing for the second time a more senior justice who had been critical of his government. Mr. Aquino is no relation to slain opposition leader Benigno Aquino.

Romanian acrobat detained by US did not want to defect

A Romanian acrobat, detained by US immigration officials shortly before he was to board a flight to West Germany because of a report by a woman who said she was his fianc'ee, did not want to defect and was to fly out of New York last night. Andi Georgescu was put under guard at an undisclosed location in New York. He was interviewed by US agents yesterday to determine whether he wanted to apply for political asylum.

Soviet spacecraft returns early for a hospital call

A Soyuz spacecraft carrying three Soviet cosmonauts made an unscheduled return to Earth yesterday because its commander was ill and needed hospital treatment, the official news agency Tass said. Vladimir Vasyutin, who was making his first flight mission, landed in his Soyuz T-14 craft after spending 65 days in space conducting scientific experiments.

House-Senate team hopes for budget-cut plan today

House and Senate negotiators hope to reach an agreement today on a sweeping plan for cuts on defense and social spending to balance the budget over the next five or six years, Senate sources said yesterday. The negotiators have been meeting privately and have reportedly been making progress on major differences in a Republican-led Senate bill proposing a balanced budget by 1991 and a Democrat-led House plan to end deficits a year earlier.

US group praises Jackson for Gorbachev encounter

The American Jewish Congress, which has been a harsh critic of the Rev. Jesse Jackson in the past, issued a statement late Wednesday praising him for bringing the issue of Soviet Jewry before Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev. The Rev. Mr. Jackson met briefly with Mr. Gorbachev Tuesday in Geneva, where the Soviet leader was meeting President Reagan. He told Gorbachev that there was ``great anxiety among the American people about the plight of Soviet Jews'' and that trust between the two countries would be improved if that anxiety was eliminated.