News Currents

THE GULF AND MIDDLE EAST US and Iraqi military commanders planned to meet early this week to discuss an Iraqi request to move war planes inside their country.... Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, in a TV address over the weekend, promised democratic reforms in his land. President Bush, speaking in Bermuda, said he found it "very difficult to see a situation under which we would have normalized relations with Saddam Hussein still in power. His credibility is zilch, zero." ... The Muslim fasting month of Ramadan began Sunday with U S troops in Saudi Arabia under orders, as a sign of respect, not to eat, smoke, or drink in public during daytime.... Kuwait will hold democratic parliamentary elections within six months to a year, Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs Abdulrahim al-Awadi said Sunday.... Oil fire experts have started flying in special equipment to Kuwait to put out its 500 burning oil wells, and an oil-covered US army sergeant has plugged the first blazing well by turning a control wheel.... Israel has allowed some Palesti nian workers from the occupied lands back into Tel Aviv and Haifa for the first time since the war began.... The Inlernational Committee of the Red Cross over the weekend sent its fourth humanitarian relief convoy to Baghdad, carrying medical equipment and the largest food supply yet.

UNITED STATES

The 230th annual St. Patrick's Day parade in New York brought more than 100,000 Irish-Americans to Fifth Avenue Saturday. There were boos and catcalls for Mayor David Dinkins as he marched with an Irish homosexual and lesbian group that had earlier been denied the right to march.... US intelligence analysts believe Mikhail Gorbachev is losing power and will be out of office within a year, US News and World Report said Saturday.... Attorney General Dick Thornburgh, in the wake of a heated Los Angeles pol ice brutality case, has ordered a review of all US police brutality complaints received by the Justice Department over the past six years.

EUROPE

Six Irishmen wrongly convicted, and jailed 16 years ago, of the Irish Republican Army's deadliest attacks in Britain have won their freedom in a court hearing, ending a case that shook faith in Britain's justice system and police. Calls for resignations of judicial officials are now being raised.... Erich Honecker, former communist prime minister of East Germany, has been quietly moved by Soviet officials to a hospital in the Soviet Union, and Germany is calling for his return.

ASIA AND THE PACIFIC

China has jailed three democracy activists in the central city of Xian for counter-revolutionary crimes, friends of the accused said Sunday.... President Corazon Aquino said Sunday that she would submit any treaty allowing US military bases to remain in the Philippines to the people for approval.

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