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MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA

At the Middle East peace talks, Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin said explicitly for the first time yesterday that he is ready to return some of the Golan Heights to Syria in exchange for peace. Israel captured the Golan in the 1967 Middle East war.... Winnie Mandela yesterday resigned all her posts in the African National Congress after reports about alleged misuse of ANC welfare funds. UNITED STATES

The number of Americans filing first-time unemployment claims during the week ending Aug. 22 rose 8,000 to total 394,000.... Former Alabama Assistant Attorney General Edward Carnes was confirmed Wednesday to the 11th US Circuit Court of Appeals. Civil rights leaders fought unsuccessfully to block the nomination, claiming Carnes was racially insensitive in his handling of death-penalty appeals.... The US Chamber of Commerce said Wednesday that its bimonthly business confidence index, which measures busine ss executives' confidence, dropped from 64.2 in June to 58 in August, the lowest level in eight months.... In New York, a police officer whose fatal shooting of a man in Washington Heights earlier this summer led to three days of violence reportedly has been cleared by a grand jury. Hundreds of additional officers patrolled Wednesday, but the area remained calm. EUROPE

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Yugoslav Foreign Minister Vladislav Jovanovic resigned yesterday, citing disagreements with Prime Minister Milan Panic's policies toward Serbs.... Fighting severe recession, the Swedish Central Bank raised its short-term lending rate to 75 percent on Wednesday. It had been 24 percent.

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