MIDDLE EASTPLO chairman Yasser Arafat yesterday began discussions of proposed Arab-Israeli peace talks with King Hussein, their first meeting since Amman announced in July it would attend such talks.... Iraqi Kurdish leaders are meeting in the northern Iraqi resort of Shaqlawa to decide whether to accept an autonomy accord with Baghdad after four months of talks, the pro-government Kurdish daily al-Iraq said yesterday. UNITED STATES Leonard Jeffries Jr., a black professor at the City College of New York, should not be disciplined for making a racially charged speech last month, but will be criticized by a faculty committee, the Faculty Senate has decided. But Jeffries's right to express his beliefs without punishment will also be defended, The New York Times reported. A storm of controversy erupted after a speech Jeffries gave criticizing American Jews and Italians for the denigration of blacks in the early US movie industry.... Con necticut Gov. Lowell Weicker has signed into law a budget imposing the state's first personal income tax, ending a 53-day impasse that included a government shutdown. ASIA AND THE PACIFIC In a clear sign Beijing is concerned a break-up of the Soviet Union could spill unrest across its borders, China's vice president Wang Zhen was quoted yesterday as calling for socialist unity in remote Xinjiang Province.... Indian security forces have used brutal methods to stem a Sikh insurgency in Punjab, including summary killings, torture and prolonged detention without trial, the human rights group Asia Watch said yesterday.