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ECONOMY AND BUSINESS

US Consumer prices rose a moderate 0.3 percent in August, pushed up by the worst increase in the cost of fruit and vegetables in more than 2-1/2 years, the US government said Sept. 15. Inflation is currently running at a 2.9 percent annual rate.... Retail sales tumbled 0.5 percent in August, the poorest showing since March, the US Commerce Department said Sept. 15.... Strikers at Poland's FSM car plant Sept. 14 ended a 55-day work stoppage that held up its $2 billion takeover by Fiat SpA.... The US annou nced Sept. 14 that it will guarantee $900 million in bank loans to Russia for the purchase of US grain. Russia will also receive $250 million in direct food aid. EUROPE

The United Nations Security Council voted Sept. 14 to quadruple the UN peacekeeping force in Bosnia-Herzegovina to at least 6,800 soldiers and gave troops authority to fight back if attacked.... The European Community will nominate a former Dutch foreign minister for a newly created post to handle problems of minorities in Europe, the Dutch Foreign Ministry said Sept. 15. UNITED STATES

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Teachers in East St. Louis, Ill., voted Sept. 14 to end a week-long strike. In Detroit, school officials went to court to force striking teachers back to work. Teachers in Grand Haven, Mich., settled a 13-day strike. In Warwick, R.I., 50 teachers Sept. 14 agreed to work under the terms of a previous contract rather than defy a back-to-work order.... In North Carolina, poultry plant owner Emmett Roe pled guilty to manslaughter charges stemming from a fire last year that killed 25 workers. He was sentenced

to nearly 20 years in prison.

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