News Currents

UNITED STATES In gubernatorial races across the country, California voters Nov. 6 elected Pete Wilson (R) over Dianne Feinstein (D); Massachusetts voters elected William Weld (R) over John Silber (D); Florida voters elected Lawton Chiles (D) over incumbent Bob Martinez (R); and Texas elected Ann Richards (D) over Clayton Williams (R).... Sen. Jesse Helms (R) of North Carolina was reelected after running what critics said was the dirtiest and most racist campaign of 1990.... California defeated a sweeping environmental initiative that would have banned offshore oil drilling and protected ancient redwood forests from logging. Colorado approved an initiative to limit terms of office. And Alaska voted to outlaw marijuana, which has been legal in the state for 15 years. (See stories, Pages 1 and 6).... In Washington, William Bennett Nov. 6 announced he will resign from his post as the first director of national drug control policy.... In Los Angeles, a huge fire raged through Universal Studios Nov. 6, destroying about one-third of the world's largest movie-making lot.


United States Assistant Secretary of State John Kelly arrived unexpectedly in Damascus Nov.7 for talks with Syrian leaders on the Persian Gulf crisis. Diplomats said Kelly was expected to face tough questions from Syria on increased US military and economic aid to Israel.... Nonaligned nations in the UN Security Council called for the creation of an Arab UN peace force in the Gulf.... US Secretary of State James Baker prepared to meet Turkish leaders in Ankara Nov.7. Baker is touring the region reportedly to drum up support in the Arab world for a military strike to force Iraqi troops from Kuwait.... Japanese Prime Minister Toshiki Kaifu, whose proposal to send Japanese troops to the Middle East faced opposition from all sides, abandoned the plan Nov. 7.... An earthquake measuring 6.6 on the Richter scale hit southern Iran, killing at least 21 people, injuring 80 others, and leaving 21,000 homeless.


The US will remove all fighter aircraft from the Philippines next year. A US Embassy statement was issued just after Richard Armitage, the US diplomat charged with negotiating an agreement with the Philippine government on the future of US bases, arrived in Manila.... Soviet riot police beat and detained students camped out in a Kiev square Nov. 7 trying to prevent the Ukrainian capital's Revolution Day military parade from taking place.... Mikhail Gorbachev Nov. 7 appealed for unity in the Soviet Union to ensure the success of his political and economic reforms. Gorbachev told a crowd on Red Square that perestroika was facing increasing difficulties as the economy worsened and ethnic conflicts flared.... China may break diplomatic relations with Nicaragua after the government of President Violeta Chamorro announced it was establishing ties with Taiwan.

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