News Currents

MIDDLE EAST Austrian President Kurt Waldheim, in Cyprus, called on the world community yesterday to move quickly to protect hundreds of thousands of Shiite Muslims in southern Iraq who Iran says face being massacred by Baghdad's troops.... British actress Vanessa Redgrave set out from Baghdad for the shattered southern Iraqi port city of Basra yesterday on a visit organized by the UN Children's Fund.... Kuwait is shipping foreigners from countries friendly to Iraq in the gulf crisis to the Iraqi border, UN and Red Cross observers said, an apparent violation of human rights pacts signed by the emirate.


William Seidman, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation chairman, has warned that the bill for cleanup of the savings and loan industry will be as high as $200 billion - $70 billion more than the Bush administration has estimated. The Seidman figure does not include interest costs on the funds borrowed for the bailout.... Chrysler Corporation chairman Lee Iacocca said Tuesday he is optimistic the US recession will be over by this fall or winter and that car sales will start to rebound.... Oil companies will have to start selling low-polluting gasoline in the nation's nine smoggiest cities by 1995 under clean-air rules proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency. The rules also would force the oil industry to provide ``oxyfuels'' (containing alcohol fuel additives) by 1992 in the 41 cities now exceeding federal carbon monoxide limits.... Oil-field firefighter Red Adair told a Senate panel extinguishing Kuwait's well fir es could take four to five years unless ``Mickey Mouse'' delays by Kuwait in obtaining equipment and water supplies are resolved.


Rebels in the Central African country of Rwanda said yesterday they had resumed fighting with government forces after the breakdown of a cease-fire. The report was unconfirmed. Meanwhile, government-run Radio Rwanda said the country has legalized multiparty politics, replacing the tiny African country's one-party state.


Bangladesh's former president, Hossain Mohammad Ershad, was sentenced to 10 years in jail by a special tribunal yesterday for keeping firearms illegally, the official BSS news agency said.... A leftist group in the Philippines issued a warning yesterday that nuclear weapons it says are stored at Clark Air Base could spread radiation over a wide area if hit by molten rock from a nearby erupting volcano. But a US spokesman said there was no threa t of ash and lava damaging weapons at the base.... Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Nakayama arrived in Vietnam Monday for a four-day visit, the first by a Japanese foreign minister to communist Vietnam. Japanese businessmen have begun doing business with Vietnam lately, which has recently liberalized its economy.

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