News In Brief

By , Samar Farah, and Judy Nichols

A suspected Palestinian suicide bomber killed himself and at least three Israelis in the Mediterranean resort of Netan-ya, the second attack of its type in the Jewish state in four days. Fifty Israelis were reported hurt in the explosion, which also caused extensive property damage in a market area. Prime Minister-elect Ariel Sharon accused some of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat's "most loyal forces" of taking part in the attacks.

A cease-fire between ethnic Albanian guerrillas operating in southern Serbia and Yugoslav forces is expected to be signed this week, a senior government official said, despite a previously rejected guerrilla demand for an international protection force. The Belgrade government also said it was ready for UN-sponsored talks on the future of ethnically split Kosovo with Ibrahim Rugova, the leader of the province's Albanian majority.

The mother of a white farmer killed by armed black squatters in Zimbabwe last April was herself shot dead in the nation's latest outbreak of political violence. Gloria Olds' death - the eighth since government-backed militants began seizing minority-owned farms - appeared aimed at provoking a white response that then would be met with a government clampdown, a family friend said. Meanwhile, the standoff between the government and white Chief Justice Anthony Gubbay ended when he agreed to early retirement in return for a promise that his subordinates wouldn't be ousted illegally.

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Despite a ninth consecutive day of shelling in Burundi's capital, hopes for peace grew with the announcement that the two main Hutu rebel movements for the first time would meet Army negotiators to discuss a truce. The talks are to take place on neutral soil in South Africa this week, sources said. A human rights group complained that no safe escape route had been provided for people trapped by the shelling in Bujumbura's northern suburbs, which it said has killed or wounded 121 people.

The explosion that destroyed a jet he was about to board was an assassination attempt, Thailand's new prime minister, Thaksin Shinawatra, said. A Thai Airways employee died Saturday and seven others were hurt in the incident, minutes before Thaksin was to board the plane in Bangkok. No death threats against him had been reported, but he has vowed a harsh crackdown against the nation's illegal drug trade.

All Cabinet members were asked to resign by Argentine President Fernando de la Rua to allow for a shakeup of his administration, the second in 15 months. The move was caused by the resignation of his finance minister Friday over a failure to revive the stagnant economy.

(c) Copyright 2001. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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