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UNITED STATES

A federal judge declared a mistrial Wednesday in the Iran-contra coverup case of former CIA spymaster Clair George after the jury said it was deadlocked. George was accused of obstructing Congress and a federal grand jury, and committing perjury. The case may be retried.... President Bush Wednesday signed into law a bill increasing government subsidies for public television and banning the broadcast of "indecent" programs before midnight. ECONOMY AND BUSINESS

The number of Americans filing first-time unemployment claims fell to 382,000 during the week ending Aug. 15, the US Labor Department said yesterday. This is the first drop below 400,000 in 22 months.... The US Commerce Department said yesterday that from April through June, the gross domestic product expanded at a 1.4 percent annual rate. This is less than half the 2.9 percent growth in the first quarter of this year. EUROPE

Czechoslovakia will split into two separate nations on Jan. 1, the leaders of the Czech and Slovak republics announced Wednesday. They agreed in principle to break up the 74-year-old federation in June. The split still must be approved by the federal parliament.

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