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The White House announced that the Federal Aviation Administration will act immediately to improve air safety. FAA administrator Dean Hinson was to discuss the steps, including accelerated hiring of 100 additional safety inspectors, in congressional testimony. The move was triggered by the crash of a 27-year-old ValuJet DC-9 in Florida's Everglades. USA Today reported the average US commercial jet was 14 years old in 1995. Also, government investigators are looking into charges that safety officials were pressured to certify ValuJet and other low-fare airlines. And a flight data recorder found in the murky waters was sent to Washington for analysis while searchers continued to look for the cockpit voice recorder and remains of passengers.
President Clinton proposed tougher penalties for youth violence and vowed to put gang members "out of business." He called for more leeway to prosecute juveniles as adults for drug conspiracy, violent crimes, and crimes involving guns. He also proposed longer detention of juveniles and expanded use of juvenile records to provide more information to victims and law-enforcement officials. While the overall crime rate is falling, youth crime has been on the rise since 1985, according to Attorney General Janet Reno.
Secretary of State Warren Christopher was to convene a meeting between leaders of Bosnia's Muslim-Croat federation in Washington. They are expected to discuss returning refugees, reconstruction, and human rights.
A crackdown on Medicare and Medicaid fraud recovered $42.3 million in funds over the last year, the Department of Heath and Human Services said. That's a return of $10 for every $1 of government spending on the pilot project, which was conducted in five states. Clinton's 1997 budget proposal seeks funds for a nationwide program.
Energy prices took their largest leap in more than five years in April, resulting in a 0.4 percent rise in consumer prices. A surge in gasoline and other energy prices accounted for three-fifths of the total advance last month. Excluding volatile energy and food sectors, the so-called core inflation rate climbed a modest 0.1 percent, analysts said. Retail sales dropped 0.3 percent, reflecting the biggest monthly drop in new-car purchases in 4-1/2 years.
Clinton was to hold a meeting to assess the impact of federal programs on Washington. The city is struggling under a $378 million budget deficit. And supporters welcomed Mayor Marion Barry, who wasn't invited to the meeting, back to Washington. He left town abruptly April 27 to recover from "spiritual relapse and physical exhaustion." At a press conference, Barry denied rumors that he'd relapsed into drug use.
Former CIA Director William Colby was buried with military honors at Arlington National Cemetery. Investigators ruled out foul play in his death.
A General Accounting Office report issued on the eve of House debate on a $267-billion defense bill is questioning the need for billions in Pentagon spending on ground attack weapons. The GOP bill adds $13 billion to Clinton's request. Clinton said he would veto the bill because it makes unnecessary additions to military spending.
Clinton still opposes same-sex marriages, the White House said. He might sign a bill outlawing them that Senator Dole backed last week.
The US will import about 20 tons of nuclear waste from research reactors in 41 nations to prevent it from being used for bombs, the Energy Department said. It will take 13 years to import all the waste.
The FBI alerted Oklahoma City officials to "an upcoming terrorist attack" five days before the deadly bombing of a federal building in that city, a lawyer for accused bomber Timothy McVeigh said. Attorney Stephen Jones made the comment in a written argument filed in US District Court in Denver, where McVeigh and codefendant Terry Nichols are awaiting trial.
The US will slap Chinese textiles and electronics with punitive tariffs today, a senior US official said. The move comes after talks between the two countries on copyright piracy failed. China says it will retaliate "tooth for tooth." And in Geneva, China indicated new flexibility on its position on a worldwide ban on nuclear explosions, giving new hope to flagging negotiations. China had been holding out for a later deadline for the agreement.
The voyage is finally over for about 4,000 Liberian refugees fleeing violence in their homeland. After 10 days spent on a rusty freighter under what the UN called "appalling" conditions, the refugees were allowed to disembark in Takoradi, Ghana. It is not clear how long they will be able to stay. Meanwhile, heavy fighting broke out in Liberia after several days of calm.