News Currents

UNITED STATES

Political observers say the Rodney King case and the Los Angeles riots have injected an unpredictable new element into a presidential campaign already driven by voter anger and frustration. President Bush Sunday took partial credit for taking steps to help defuse the crisis in Los Angeles and said he would go ahead with plans to visit the riot-torn city later this week. Ross Perot had criticized Bush's actions in dealing with the crisis. And Housing Secretary Jack Kemp said Bill Clinton "reached a new lo w" in comments that Republicans fueled the Los Angeles riots through neglect of cities. ECONOMY AND BUSINESS

McDonnell Douglas has sent a senior executive to Israel to lobby for the F-18 as Israel's next front-line warplane and counter the Jewish state's tentative agreement to assemble F-16s developed by General Dynamics.... Asian finance ministers and bankers gathered for the Asian Development Bank's annual meeting, which began yesterday in Hong Kong, are concerned that a retreat in Japanese bank lending may obstruct development in fast-growing Southeast Asia. Japanese direct investment fueled much of the fast

growth in Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia during the late 1980s. ASIA AND THE PACIFIC

Opponents of communist-style rule in the Central Asian republic of Tajikistan have warned of violence after parliament decided to reinstate its fired speaker. Davlat Uzmon, deputy leader of the Islamic Revival Party, referring to parliament's decision, said that the Muslim-democratic opposition's agreement with the government is now off, and he warned of conflict.... Heavy fighting erupted south of Kabul early yesterday as fundamentalist rebel guerrillas tried to advance toward the Afghan capital. The ne w Islamic government said fundamentalist leader Gulbuddin Hekmatyar was trying to enter the city.... South Korean students chanted anti-American slogans outside the US Embassy in Seoul yesterday, demanding that Korean residents in Los Angeles be compensated for riot losses.... The number of Japanese under 15 years old has hit a post-1945 low of 21.6 million. The government is concerned about eventual labor shortages, slow economic growth, and increased tax burdens unless more children are born in Japan. LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN

Some 100 Maoist Shining Path guerrillas attacked a Peruvian army base, triggering a battle that left 15 guerrillas and two soldiers dead, the army said Sunday. The attack Friday, which was not reported until Sunday, was the biggest guerrilla action since President Alberto Fujimori dissolved Congress and suspended constitutional rule April 5. Meanwhile, four Latin American foreign ministers and the head of the Organization of American States arrived in Lima early Monday for a second round of talks aimed a t restoring Peru to full democracy.

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