News In Brief

THE US

Calling slain Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin a "martyr for his nation's peace," President Clinton was set to head the US delegation at Rabin's funeral in Jerusalem today. Other US attendees include former presidents Carter and Bush, former first lady Nancy Reagan, Senator Dole, and Speaker Gingrich. On Sunday, Secretary of Defense Christopher said the administration will "rededicate ourselves to the promotion of Mideast peace."

Mixed signals are coming out of the peace talks on Bosnia in Dayton, Ohio. US officials have portrayed a spirit of camaraderie developing between Serb, Bosnian, and Croat leaders, saying they have even gone bowling together. And Bosnian President Izetbegovic, attending an off-base soccer game, said Saturday, "In my opinion, it goes well so far." But some sources inside the talks said the cagey delegates are still insisting on as little personal contact as possible. Separately, Defense Secretary Perry said he will meet with Russian Defense Minister Grachev on Wednesday in their last exchange over details of the proposed US-Russian peacekeeper force for Bosnia.

Clinton is reportedly mulling over a veto of the welfare-reform plan being hammered out in House-Senate conference. He has long said he would veto the more conservative House bill, but under intense pressure from Democrats he may change his mind on the more moderate Senate plan. Also, he reiterated Saturday his plan to veto environmental legislation if it "protects polluters, not the public."

In a Maine straw poll, Senator Gramm trounced his GOP presidential rivals, including Senator Dole, who did not attend the Saturday fund-raiser. Gramm got 42 percent of the votes; Senator Lugar, who was present, got 21 percent; Dole got 21 percent.

A witness in Gen. Manuel Noriega's drug trial may have been paid $1.25 million by the Cali drug cartel. The disclosure, reported in the Washington Post Saturday, came as federal prosecutors disclosed that an unnamed informer told US drug agents that the cartel paid witness Ricardo Bilonick $250,000 as he surrendered to US officials in Panama and $1 million later.

Rolando Cruz, a suspect for 11 years in the 1983 abduction and murder of a young Chicago girl, was acquitted Friday. The judge cited lack of evidence. The case, which has had five trials, had been overturned by the Illinois Supreme Court twice. The trial of Alejandro Hernandez, a man once convicted of the crime with Cruz, continues Nov. 20.

Saying race played a large part in the police beating of black motorist Johnny Gammage, a six-member panel in Pittsburgh recommended homicide charges for the five officers involved. Autopsy reports said Gammage died of injuries related to the beating. He was pulled over in October while driving a Jaguar belonging to his cousin - Pittsburgh Steeler Ray Seals.

Former Defense Secretary Robert McNamara was in Hanoi yesterday in his first visit to Vietnam since the war ended. McNamara, who has said the war was "terribly wrong," is discussing a Council on Foreign Relations conference there set for 1996.

Daiwa's US clients aren't waiting for the troubled Japanese-based bank to close before pulling their money out. About 40 showed up Friday in the New York branch to withdraw funds. On Thursday, regulators gave Daiwa 90 days to vacate the US and announced a 24-count fraud and forgery indictment.

The US froze the assets of new Islamic Jihad leader Ramadan Abdullah Shallah on Friday. It also added Shallah, who had been affiliated with the University of South Florida, to its list of terrorists.

Shuttle Columbia ended its 16-day trip yesterday, landing at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. It was NASA's second-longest shuttle mission.

Every 2-1/2 acres of tropical rain forest absorbs one ton of carbon dioxide per year, making the rain forests the largest absorbers of carbon dioxide produced by man's burning of fuels, the US government reported on Friday.

THE WORLD

President Clinton, Jordan's King Hussein, and several European leaders planned to attend the funeral of Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin today. Rabin was killed by a Jewish right-winger at a peace rally in Tel Aviv Saturday. Upon arrest, the assassin said he had intended to kill Foreign Minister Shimon Peres as well. Peres took over as Israel's acting prime minister. PLO leader Yasser Arafat called the killing a tragedy but decided not to attend the funeral to avoid provoking hardliner reactions. Meanwhile, a Muslim militant rally in Beirut to mourn the death of a Palestinian guerrilla leader yesterday turned into a celebration upon news of Rabin's assassination.

US and UN mediators were to hold talks with rebel Serbs in Croatia's Eastern Slavonia yesterday with hopes of averting conflict that could unravel the peace process. A first effort to get the sides together failed Saturday. Croatian President Franjo Tudjman said the UN peacekeeping mandate on its territory would not be renewed at the end of the month. And the UN confirmed that Monitor correspondent David Rohde is being held by the Serbs. He talked by phone with his family Saturday.

More than 500 people are dead and some 280 missing after the strongest typhoon in the Philippines since 1984 ripped through 25 provinces last week.

Russia's Supreme Court Saturday gave the Central Election Commission until tomorrow to register the Yabloko Party, headed by pro-reform presidential hopeful Grigory Yavlinsky. The commission threw Russian politics into turmoil when it refused to register the party.

Turkish Prime Minister Tansu Ciller's government won a vote of confidence yesterday, bringing a pause to six weeks of political turmoil that brought on an early election set for Dec. 24.

Former Italian prime minister Giulio Andreotti was charged yesterday with complicity in murder. He was indicted in the 1979 murder of journalist Nino Pecorelli. Andreotti will stand trial with three of the Mafia's most notorious mobsters.

One of South Korea's richest tycoons, Chung Tae-soo, confessed yesterday that he helped former president Roh Tae-woo hide at least $65 million. After two nights of violent street protests over the country's political corruption, Seoul and other cities were relatively peaceful yesterday. Also, US Defense Secretary Perry said Friday that South Korea will increase by $100 million its share of the cost of basing 37,000 US troops there.

In a meeting Saturday, Okinawa's governor told Japan's prime minister he wants the island turned into an international zone free of US military bases by 2015. Gov. Masahide Ota also refused to force owners of base land to continue leasing their property to the US military. He was responding to outrage on the island over the rape of a girl allegedly by three US servicemen.

South Africa's first democratic local elections broadened support for President Mandela's ANC. With less than 15 percent of the vote still to be tallied yesterday, the ANC had won 70 percent of the vote.

About 200 people were unaccounted for Saturday a day after a blast at an arms factory in central Argentina showered the town of Rio Tercero with shrapnel and bombs. At least 13 were killed and about 330 injured.

A half-billion people in cities and towns worldwide are homeless or live in inferior housing. Housing cannot keep up with exploding urban population, which is expected to double in the next 30 years, the UN said yesterday.

ETCETERA

The last song he sang was the 'Song of Peace'. He put this song in his pocket, and the bullet went through this song. The song of peace ringing in our ears will not end."

- Shimon Peres, on Yitzhak Rabin, who was killed Saturday soon after joining the singing at a Tel Aviv peace rally.

Beijing's "language police" have issued a warning against the introduction of Western words into China's ancient language, calling it cultural colonization, the Guangming Daily said yesterday. Foreign words threaten to dilute the language's national identity, the State Language Commission said.

Sixty Impressionist paintings and sculptures amassed by Danish businessman Ny Carlsberg are on display at the Orsay Museum in Paris. Included are works by Manet, Monet, Degas, Gauguin, and Rodin.

Queen Nefertari's tomb was opened to the public Saturday for the first time since it was discovered in 1904. She was the favorite wife of King Ramses II. Two journalists examine a painting in the tomb, which is carved out of a mountain in the Valley of the Queens near Luxor, 315 miles south of Cairo.

Top Single Recordings

1. "Fantasy," Mariah Carey (Columbia)

2. "Gangsta's Paradise," Coolio featuring L.V. (MCA) (Platinum)

3. "Runaway," Janet Jackson (A&M)

4. "Kiss From a Rose," Seal (ZTT-Sire) (Gold)

5. "Tell Me," Groove Theory (Epic) (Gold)

6. "As I Lay Me Down," Sophie B. Hawkins (Columbia)

7. "Back for Good," Take That (Arista)

8. "Only Wanna Be With You," Hootie & the Blowfish (Atlantic)

9. "Who Can I Run To," Xscape (So So Def)

10. "Name," Goo Goo Dolls (Metal Blade)

(Platinum signifies more than 1 million copies sold; Gold signifies more than 500,000 sold.)

- Billboard-Soundscan Inc./ Broadcast Data Systems

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