News Currents

MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA

The Middle East peace talks will break for a period of five months, following the next round of negotiations in Washington April 27, because of the June election in Israel, according to Israeli Foreign Ministry officials quoted yesterday in the Hadashot daily.... Normal living stalled badly in Lebanon yesterday as thousands of people marched through Beirut and other cities to protest deteriorating economic conditions.... Kenyan President Daniel arap Moi is willing to invite international observers to mon itor free elections in the East African country, the party newspaper Kenya Times reported yesterday. The elections have to be called at the latest at the end of the current legislative period in March 1993. UNITED STATES

Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley dismissed acting Transportation Department director John LaPlante Tuesday, saying LaPlante failed to order repairs quickly enough after being notified last month of a collapse in the tunnel system at the bottom of the Chicago River. The tunnel ruptured early Monday, flooding the century-old tunnel system and pouring tons of water into basements of many downtown buildings in the Loop.... House Democratic Leader Richard Gephardt said Tuesday he had overdrawn his account at th e House bank 28 times and was paying the US Treasury $614.60 in lieu of penalties and interest.... Leona Helmsley entered a federal women's prison in Lexington, Ky., yesterday, beginning a four-year sentence for tax evasion after a federal appeals court Tuesday rejected her last bid to stay free.... A federal judge has dismissed all but a few items from a lawsuit brought by Apple Computer Inc. against Microsoft Corporation and Hewlett-Packard Company. Apple claimed the two had illegally copied the "look and

feel" of its Macintosh computer graphics. ASIA AND THE PACIFIC

Afghanistan President Najibullah has gone into hiding after the fall of Bagram air base to Afghan rebels, the United News of India said yesterday, quoting a Kabul Radio broadcast.... Vietnam's National Assembly yesterday approved a revised Constitution that seeks to strengthen the market economy but reaffirms the political monopoly of the Communist Party. ENVIRONMENT AND SCIENCE

Former US President Jimmy Carter told a conference of world leaders in Tokyo yesterday that the US and other wealthy countries bear more blame than developing nations for the world's environmental woes. He called for a reorganization of the Global Environmental Facility, an organization designed to fund global environmental projects, to allow an equal voice for developing nations in decisionmaking.... Scientists and officials from 56 countries ended a 10-day conference on the ozone layer with an urgent c all in Geneva yesterday for speedier action to protect the vital atmospheric shield.

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