News In Brief

The World

Bank stocks and the pound tumbled after Britain's oldest investment bank lost $800 million gambling on Asian futures, but the London Stock Exchange weathered the crisis better than analysts had predicted. Administrators took control of the collapsed Baring Brothers & Co. Authorities haven't named the trader suspected of making the deals, but newspapers identified him as Singapore-based Nicholas Leeson. (Story, Page 1.)

A Russian force of about 200 armored vehicles and 50 tanks surrounded the last remaining separatist stronghold in Grozny. Russian troops also pounded southern Chechnya with heavy artillery and rockets. (Chechen refugees, Page 1.)

The United Nations is facing blockades from both sides in the Bosnian conflict. Bosnian Serbs prevented the UN from examining a suspected arms stash in Sarajevo and blocked the resupply of peacekeepers in an eastern Muslim enclave. Bosnia's Muslim-led government also has imposed restrictions on UN troops across the country. Turkish President Demirel canceled a trip to Sarajevo because Bosnian Serbs won't guarantee his safety.

Israeli Prime Minister Rabin said he plans to import about 20,000 foreign workers over the next few months, eliminating the need for Palestinian labor from the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Rabin said replacing Palestinian labor would improve security but could endanger Jewish settlers living in Palestinian areas.

The African National Congress named a high-ranking committee to investigate charges of corruption and lack of discipline against some of its most prominent members. Winnie Mandela, the president's estranged wife, may be among the first brought before the disciplinary board. President Mandela, meanwhile, ordered extra security for areas prone to violence and crime. He was responding to fears that violence would increase because of a political dispute between the ANC and the Zulu nationalist Inkatha Freedom Party. (Story, Page 6.)

Ecuadoran and Peruvian troops continued their border battle, and both sides said the number of casualties was growing. The Vatican said it would send a peace envoy to the two countries to try to persuade them to respect a cease-fire agreement signed earlier this month.

Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams demanded a meeting with British Prime Minister Major as the next step in Northern Ireland's peace process. Adams rejected British demands that the IRA give up its weapons as a condition of entering peace talks. Sinn Fein said Britain must withdraw its troops and police must disarm before the IRA does.

American marines came ashore in Mogadishu yesterday to protect the last retreating UN peacekeepers. About 2,000 more soldiers will follow, but US officials won't say when they will land. Hundreds of Somali women demanding peace marched through Mogadishu in response to a battle between rival militias.

Soldiers and police surrounded an ancient mosque in Varanasi, India's holiest city, to protect it from a banned group of Hindu radicals bent on destroying it. The group, the World Hindu Council, was involved in the 1992 destruction of a mosque in Ayodhya in 1992.

Vice President Gore, meeting with member states at NATO headquarters in Brussels, restated Washington's support for NATO Secretary-General Willy Claes. Claes is under fire for a Belgian bribery scandal when he was economics minister in 1989.

The US

The Federal Reserve will raise interest rates one more time, a survey of economic forecasters says. But the National Association of Business Economists said most of the 48 professional forecasters polled expect the Fed to begin pushing rates back down by the end of the year. The forecasters said the economy will grow 2.4 percent in 1995 and 2.2 percent in 1996.

The administration wants to allow banks to merge with other money firms to become financial-service companies. The New York Times and Wall Street Journal said Treasury Secretary Rubin would propose repealing or changing two laws: one to allow financial firms to own commercial banks, securities companies, and investment banks; and another to permit companies to own both banks and insurance companies.

Almost two-thirds of children polled believe some TV shows and movies influence children to disrespect parents or to have sex at too young an age. The survey, commissioned by the Children Now advocacy group, questioned 750 10- to 16-year-olds. (Story, Page 4.)

Massachusetts Governor Weld will not run for president in 1996, a spokeswoman said. Weld has previously said he would be interested in teaming up as vice presidential cnadidate with Senator Dole.

The District of Columbia gave 32,000 employees the day off. Mayor Barry plans 10 such furlough days to save Washington $70 million as he tries to close a $750 million budget deficit. The furloughs would be canceled if the mayor and union officials can agree on a 10 percent salary cut.

The baseball strike reached Day 200 as owners and players were scheduled to meet in Scottsdale, Ariz. Exhibition games with replacement players are set to begin tomorrow, and management negotiator John Harrington of the Boston Red Sox said the sides must settle by March 5 for the season to start with regular players on April 5.

The Supreme Court cleared the way for a new trial in a former team owner's antitrust suit against the NFL. The court rejected the league's argument that William Sullivan, who used to own the New England Patriots, cannot sue it for refusing to let him sell stock to the public. But the court dismissed Sullivan's appeal to reinstate a $51 million judgment against the league. In another matter, the court turned an IRS effort to make an heir pay more in estate taxes and interest than he had inherited.

Gasoline prices fell almost three-quarters of a cent per gallon over the past two weeks. The Lundberg Survey said the average price of all grades of gas was 117.72 cents per gallon, including taxes, on Feb. 24.

Surgeon general nominee Henry Foster will meet with senators tomorrow to make his case. His nomination formally goes to the Senate this week. Sunday he blasted "right-wing extremists" for distorting his record. He denied approving a controversial syphilis study on black men in the 1960s. The study of 400 men reportedly allowed some to die without treatment.

Defense Secretary Perry was set to approve a proposed list of military base closings. On the draft list of facilities suggested for shutdown, according to the Associated Press, are the following: Red River Army Depot, Reese Air Force Base, Brooks Air Force Base, and Corpus Christi Naval Air Station in Texas; Fort McClellan in Alabama; Rome Laboratory at Griffiths Air Force Base and a New York City recruiting center in New York; Fort Indiantown Gap in Pennsylvania; Fitzsimons Army Medical Center in Colorado; South Weymouth Naval Air Station in Massachusetts; Meridian Naval Air Station in Mississippi; Fort Chaffee Reserve Center in Arkansas; Navy Air Engineering Station in New Jersey; Naval Surface Warfare Center in Maryland; Louisville Naval Ordnance Station in Kentucky; Indianapolis Naval Air Warfare Center in Indiana. Etcetera

Sam Sheppard, a Cambridge, Mass., hygienist, hopes walking from Boston to New Orleans will raise opposition to the death penalty. In 1959, Dr. Sam Sheppard, his father, was wrongfully convicted of his wife's murder. He spent 12 years in prison before being acquitted.

Wildlife experts from Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia will meet in Hanoi tomorrow to try to save the region's dwindling tiger population. The Worldwide Fund for Nature, based in Gland, Switzerland, helped organize the meeting.

"The Stone Diaries" by Carol Shields won the National Book Critics Circle's 1994 fiction prize. The nonfiction prize went to "The Rape of Europa: The Fate of Europe's Treasures in the Third Reich and the Second World War" by Lynn H. Nicholas. "Rider" by Mark Rudman won for poetry, and "Shot in the Heart" by Mikal Gilmore for biography.

An ice shelf broke free from Antarctica because of a gradual rise in the area's temperature, British scientists say. The 48-by-23-mile iceberg, which is more than 650 feet thick, is drifting into the Pacific. Week's Top Video Rentals 1. "Clear and Present Danger," (Paramount) 2. "The Mask," (Turner) 3. "True Lies," (FoxVideo) 4. "Wolf," (Columbia TriStar) 5. "The Client," (Warner) 6. "It Could Happen to You," (Columbia) 7. "Blown Away," (MGM-UA) 8. "Color of Night," (Hollywood) 9. "The Shadow," (MCA-Universal) 10. "Renaissance Man," (Touchstone) 11. "Corrina, Corrina," (Turner) 12. "Little Giants," (Warner) 13. "When a Man Loves a Woman," (Touchstone) 14. Maverick," (Warner) 15. "I Love Trouble," (Touchstone)

- Copyright 1995, Billboard Publications Inc.

``On Gemini 7 I was in a tin can with [Frank ] Borman for two weeks. And they're talking about new records for 15 days in a big area where they can float around and have fun?"

- Retired astronaut James Lovell on the upcoming shuttle mission

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