News In Brief

The US

A refusal by President Clinton to testify about his ties with Monica Lewinsky could constitute an impeachable offense, Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Orrin Hatch said. The Utah Republican said Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr should indict Lewinsky if he could not get her testimony voluntarily and should name Clinton as an "unindicted co-conspirator if that's what it comes down to." Hatch also told NBC's "Meet the Press" that he planned to draft legislation next year that would shield a president's bodyguards from having to testify about what they observe on duty.

A Cuban exile group denied allegations its members had financed violent attacks against Cuba's Communist regime. The New York Times had reported that Luis Posada Carriles - linked to a series of bombings last year at Cuban hotels and restaurants - told reporters he received more than $200,000 from Jorge Mas Canosa, former leader of the Cuban American National Foundation in Miami, and other foundation officials. The foundation is considered the leading voice of Miami's Cuban community.

In a setback to settlement talks, the top negotiator for General Motors left Flint, Mich., after an accord to end United Auto Workers Union strikes there failed to materialize. GM had pushed for a settlement at the end of the company's two-week summer-vacation shutdown. Only three major GM assembly plants in North American reopened. Twenty-six others remained closed, along with more than 100 parts plants. As talks to end strikes continued, UAW members at a GM stamping plant in Indianapolis voted to authorize a strike.

GM said it was recalling nearly a million cars with air bags that can deploy without warning. A spokeswoman said about 863,000 Chevrolet Cavaliers and Pontiac Sunfires from the 1996 and 1997 model years were being recalled, along with 103,000 Cadillac DeVille, Concours, Eldorado, and Seville cars from 1995. Federal safety officials were reportedly investigating 96 complaints involving Cavalier and Sunfire air bags deploying inadvertently.

Pilots for TWA would get significant pay increases under a tentative four-year accord reached after more than a year of negotiations. Details were not released, but airline officials said the agreement would start TWA pilots on the way to salary parity with pilots for other major airlines. All TWA employees made financial concessions when the airline went through two recent bankruptcies. TWA still must reach agreement with its machinists, flight attendants, and passenger-service workers.

Another in a series of riots involving college towns resulted in 14 injuries, 24 arrests, and an estimated $50,000 in property damage after students turned on police at an annual arts festival in State College, Pa. Violence erupted as bars were closing Sunday at 1:30 a.m. and officers confiscated a keg of beer. The town is the home of Pennsylvania State University's main campus. At least 10 similar disturbances have occurred this year, most recently May 1 in East Lansing, Mich.

Hillary Rodham Clinton began a tour of historic sites along the East Coast to kindle interest in sustaining such US legacies. Her first stop was the Smithsonian's National Museum, where she announced a gift of $10 million to help restore and protect the flag that inspired Francis Scott Key to compose the words to the national anthem. The donation by Polo Ralph Lauren Corp. is the largest in the history of the Smithsonian. It was accompanied by an additional $3 million personal gift from Lauren to pay for a historical-preservation ad campaign.

The NAACP will engage in more political agitation and less in-fighting under his leadership, Julian Bond told members during his first major address as chairman of the nation's oldest civil-rights group. A six-day NAACP conclave in Atlanta ends Thursday.

The World

Discussions were under way in Tokyo on who should be nominated to replace Prime Minister Hashimoto. He announced his resignation after last weekend's decisive defeat for the ruling Liberal Democratic Party in Senate elections, claiming responsibility for failing to lift Japan out of its worst recession since World War II. The developments had relatively small impact on financial trading, but business leaders worried that a power vacuum could endanger the recovery measures already put in place by Hashimoto's government.

The most massive celebrations since the end of World War II swept across France after its national soccer team shut out defending champion Brazil, 3-0, and won the World Cup soccer title. It was France's first as well as the first for a host country since 1978.

Protestant Orangemen marched peacefully through a Catholic neighborhood of Bel-fast, Northern Ireland, one day after an arson attack that threatened to incite a new round of sectarian unrest in the province. The parade along the Lower Ormeau Road was delayed by a bomb scare but went ahead after Catholics agreed to stage only a "dignified" silent protest in exchange for a promise that marchers would walk to the beat of a single drum.

International Monetary Fund officials agreed to a $14.8 billion bailout package for Russia's sinking economy that "satisfied both parties," negotiators said. The IMF would provide $12.5 billion, with the World Bank and Japan chipping in $1.7 billion and $600 million, respectively. The agreement still needed the blessing of IMF officials in Washington and Russia's Communist-led parliament.

Reports that Russia will supply anti-aircraft missiles to the Greek Cypriot government were confirmed by their respective presidents. No date for delivery was announced, but it is widely expected to take place by the end of November. Against that backdrop, Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash warned again of retaliation, saying "you will get a reaction to whatever you do." An Ankara newspaper reported that Turkish Air Force pilots have trained in how to attack the missiles planned for deployment on Cyprus.

Torn by fierce riots after the death of political prisoner Moshood Abiola, Nigeria's largest city, Lagos, returned to business as usual as military President Abubakar prepared to announce his "democracy plan." The plan was expected to be detailed as early as today in his second address to the nation in less than a week.

The mayor of Quito and his business tycoon rival both were claiming victory in Ecuador's presidential election. Jamil Mahuad declared himself the winner when exit polls gave him a 7 point lead over banana magnate Alvaro Noboa. But the lead shrank to 2.6 percent as vote-counting ended, resulting in a technical tie and prompting Noboa to make the same claim. Official results would be known tomorrow, the national election commission said.

In a move that critics said would turn Uganda into a one-party state, President Yoweri Museveni was elected unopposed to head the new political umbrella body that would initiate national policy. The "Movement," to which all Ugandans must belong by law, is the successor to Museveni's party, which came to power in 1986 after a five-year guerrilla war. A Cabinet minister rejected claims that the structure would deny "the right to exercise political power."

Etceteras

" We're going to party right to the end of the century!" - An ecstatic Parisian, joining nationwide celebrations as France won its first World Cup soccer title, 3-0, over defending champion Brazil.

With the General Motors strike now in its fifth week, Reeder Chevrolet in Knoxville, Tenn., has few cars left. Still, it's ready to deal, deal, deal! No factory rebates, but the dealer guarantees every model in stock is brand-new and will never leak oil on the driveway. Not one of them is a lemon, a spokesman says. Right ... because they're watermelons, which Reeder is selling to "keep morale up."

But in Dublin, Ireland, a court ordered a used-car dealer to pay one of its customers $2,760 after he discovered his purchase was held together with resin-covered newspapers that were used to camouflage parts that had rusted away.

The Day's List

'Lethal Weapon 4' Takes Top Spot at Box Office

The latest installment of a Mel Gibson-Danny Glover cop saga took first place in the box office derby in its debut weekend. It also surpassed the launches of the three previous entries in the "Lethal Weapon" series, Warner Bros. said. Although slipping to second place, "Armageddon" brought in $23.1 million, lifting its two-week total to $99.4 million. The estimated grosses for top films in North America July 10-12 (in millions):

1. "Lethal Weapon 4" $33.4

2. "Armageddon" 23.1

3. "Small Soldiers," 14.5

4. "Dr. Dolittle" 12.8

5. "Mulan" 7.0

6. "Madeline" 6.6

7. "The Truman Show," 3.73

8. "The X-Files" 3.7

9. (tie) "Out of Sight" 3.7

10. "Six Days, Seven Nights" 3.5

- Exhibitor Relations Inc./AP

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