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House members plan to take up legislation providing $18 billion in funding to the International Monetary Fund and to rewrite national banking laws as Congress resumed this week after a spring break. Congress also is expected to take up issues such as the federal budget, disaster relief for states hit by winter storms, the highway bill, tobacco, education tax credits, and money to pay for US troops in Bosnia and the Persian gulf.
A damage report was expected to land on President Clintons desk today from Cecil Whaley, director of natural disasters for the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency. Nashville officials revised earlier damage estimates, saying probably more than 500 homes were hit by last weeks tornado.
Clinton planned to make a statement to try to salvage comprehensive antismoking legislation from being killed by the tobacco industry. White House spokesman Joe Lockhart said Clinton would use his statement to refocus attention on the objectives of the legislation to protect children and the public from tobacco.
The US Supreme Court agreed to decide how far cities can go in enacting antiloitering ordinances aimed at deterring crime by street gangs. The court said it will hear Chicagos argument that its ordinance thrown out by a lower court was a lawful effort to head off drug deals and shootings associated with gangs.
A crew of scientists and doctors on the space shuttle Columbia planned to continue research on the more than 2,000 mice, rats, crickets, snails, and fish accompanying them on their two-week mission. One experiment hopes to determine whether animals and humans can be born in space. The crew also planned to participated in sleep experiments. Earlier they underwent ball-catching and virtual-reality experiments.
The US military was to begin a hearing at Camp Lejeune Marine Corps Base in Jackson ville, N.C., on four fliers whose jet severed a gondola cable at an Italian ski resort, killing 20 people. The hearing will try to determine if evidence exists to support charges of negligent homicide and involuntary manslaughter. The crewmen also are charged with dereliction of duty and damage to military and private property.
Political dissident Wang Dan thanked the US government for lobbying to free him from a Chinese jail and pleaded for the release of more prisoners of conscience. A leader of the 1989 pro-democracy Tiananmen Square protests, Wang spent 6-1/2 years in prison on charges that he was plotting the overthrow of Chinas government.
Hundreds of people rang small bells after 168 seconds of silence at the site of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building to commemorate the lives of those killed in the Oklahoma City bombing April 19, 1995. Also, in Waco, Texas, a replica of the Liberty Bell was rung after the reading of names of the people who died the same date in 1993, when the Branch Davidian compound went up in flames in the midst of a raid by federal agents.
Undergraduate students are being shortchanged by US research universities, according to a report by the Washington-based Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. In Reinventing Undergraduate Education: A Blueprint for Americas Research Universities, a panel assembled by the nonprofit organization reported that students are often taught by poorly trained or untrained teaching assistants, and many students graduate without a coherent body of knowledge.
Linda McCartney, who died in Los Angeles, was a noted photographer and the wife of former Beatle Paul McCartney. The couple were described as inseparable in their 29 years of marriage.
Russias lower house of parliament is to meet today to set the date for the final vote on confirming Prime Minister-designate Sergei Kiriyenko. He failed again last week to gain the necessary votes from the Communist-controlled Duma, and by law President Yeltsin can install him anyway, dismiss parliament, and rule by decree until a new election is held if it happens three times. Meanwhile, Kiriyenko assured visiting deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott that the turmoil would harm neither relations with the US nor the pace of economic reform in Russia.
Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams postponed a party vote for two weeks on whether to help govern Northern Ireland under terms of the new peace accord with Protestants. He took the step to allow members time to vent frustrations with the deal and to minimize the likelihood of a split in the ranks that could cause its rejection. Meanwhile, in Britain, leaders of the two main opposition parties vowed to help Prime Minister Blair campaign for approval of the deal in a May referendum.