News In Brief

Pakistan's President Zia ul-Haq announced an end to 8 1/2 years of martial law yesterday. No dramatic changes are expected under the new civilian order. Zia will remain President and Army chief of staff. Under the country's version of parliamentary democracy, he will continue to hold sweeping powers.

Reports say that Zia has repealed all but a few of the martial law regulations and restored fundamental rights. But it remains uncertain whether the remaining martial law orders or any other government regulations will be invoked to suppress political dissent. With the lifting of martial law, Zia has raised some hopes that the current political situation could eventually lead to a truly democratic set-up.

But Zia said ``the new democratic order is neither the rival nor the adversary of the outgoing system. It is an extension of the system that has been in force for the past few years.''

-- Vyvyan Tenorio

Hussein arrives in Syria for talks with Assad

King Hussein of Jordan arrived yesterday on his first visit to Syria in a decade for talks with President Hafez al-Assad, aimed at improving relations between their two countries. The 24-hour visit, at Assad's invitation, follows four months of reconciliation talks between the prime ministers of Syria and Jordan under the sponsorship of the Arab League.

The meetings have led to improved relations, but differences remain over Middle East peace policies and the Iraq-Iran war in which Syria backs Iran and Jordan supports Iraq.

Seattle jury convicts 10 members of neo-Nazi group

A federal jury convicted the 10 people of the neo-Nazi group The Order on charges of racketeering yesterday. The verdicts meant a clean sweep on the racketeering charges for federal prosecutors, who had accused the nine men and one woman of participating in a white supremacist plot that included the murder of Denver radio host Alan Berg and more than $4 million in robberies in 1983 and 1984.

California meat cutters OK contract, end 7-week strike

Meat cutters reluctantly accepted a contract offer they had rejected earlier to end the more than seven-weeks-old strike against 900 southern California supermarkets. The first of an estimated 8,000 meat cutters and wrappers began returning to work yesterday.

China, US implement pact on nuclear cooperation

A Sino-US agreement on peaceful nuclear cooperation, reached 18 months ago but delayed by congressional fears of possible proliferation of nuclear technology, went into effect yesterday. Chinese Assistant Foreign Minister Zhu Qizhen and US Ambassador Winston Lord exchanged diplomatic notes at a ceremony in Peking, formally putting the pact into operation.

West grows fastest as US population rises 5.4%

The US population has grown by 12.2 million, or 5.4 percent over the past five years, with Southern and Western states gaining more than 90 percent of the increase, the Census Bureau reported Sunday. US population as of last July 1 was placed at 238,740,000.

Mali, Burkina Faso reach accord after border clash

Mali President Mouassa Traore signed a cease-fire pact with Burkina Faso's foreign ministers yesterday, Mali's state-run radio said. The agreement apparently ended a five-day border conflict between the two West African nations.

Commuter train runs out of track at Hoboken station

A commuter train entering Hoboken station failed to stop and smashed into a bumper at the end of the track, injuring at least 29 passengers, authorities said yesterday. There were no further details at press time.

First Soviet wives join their American husbands in US

In the first reunion of Soviet-American couples, Helle Frejus, who has not seen her husband, Kazimierz, since 1981, arrived here Sunday night to join her husband. And Tatyana Bondareva, a Soviet citizen who has not seen her American husband for a year, set off from Frankfurt, West Germany, yesterday for a new year celebration with her spouse in New York.

Small increase in leading indicators puzzles analysts

The US government's main gauge of future economic activity, the index of leading indicators, rose 0.1 percent in November, the smallest gain since June, the government reported Monday. The weak showing surprised many analysts who had been expecting a much better performance given the fact that the stock market hit record highs during the month.

FBI chief says 23 terrorist incidents forestalled in 1985

Federal Bureau of Investigation Director William H. Webster, in an interview on NBC's ``Today'' show yesterday, said that in the past year, authorities prevented 23 terrorist incidents in the United States. Mr. Webster, when asked why, despite all the terrorism incidents abroad, it had not been a bad year for terrorism in the US, said increased law enforcement and analytical capability had helped stop incidents before they started.

Radio play about war causes panic among Finn listeners

A US radio play called ``The Next War'' about a nuclear clash between the superpowers caused panic when it was broadcast in Finland Sunday. The play contained a passage reporting exceptionally high atmospheric radioactivity and informing the public that a statement was expected shortly by the president of the United States. It was this that started the panic, officials said.

Romance in the workplace grieves company managers

Office romances are blooming in Britain and causing heartache to company managers, according to a report in the magazine Personnel Management. Researchers asked 76 senior and middle managers to comment on ``love among the filing cabinets'' at their workplaces. Each observed an average of six romances per office.

Others spoke of embarrassed customers going elsewhere and of staff morale damaged by love rivalries.

The Christian Science Monitor will not be published on Jan. 1, a national holiday in the United States.

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