The world's richest seven industrial nations, in a communique that several countries hailed as a major breakthrough, voiced confidence that the world economy would get better soon. Each of the Group of Seven countries laid out plans to promote growth, but a joint strategy was not adopted. The G-7 also called on the International Monetary Fund to bring at least some of the new states of the former Soviet Union under its wing by spring.... The Bush administration has omitted the 1972 anti-ballistic missile
treaty from a list of major, existing arms control agreements it is telling the former Soviet Republics they should adhere to, the Washington Post reported yesterday.... The US's Jim Courier yesterday defeated world's top-rated tennis player, Stefan Edberg, in the Australian Open final.... The Commonwealth of Independent States, in its first international match since the Soviet Union breakup, defeated the US 1-0 Saturday in a soccer "friendly" before 30,386 fans in Miami. EUROPE
Britain's ruling Conservative Party opened a surprise three-point lead over the Labour opposition in an opinion poll yesterday, fueling speculation of an early election.... International Olympic Committee president Juan Antonio Samaranch said Saturday he expects 12 former Soviet republics to get independent IOC recognition in March, although they will compete as a united team in the 1992 Games.... Britain's Sunday Times reported that the first concrete evidence had emerged of a bid by Iran to recruit for mer Soviet nuclear scientists to help build a bomb.... Poland's new minority government cleared its first major hurdle Saturday when the country's parliament passed a tough interim budget bill. MIDDLE EAST AND GULF
Azerbaijan's President Ayaz Mutalibov ended an official four-day visit to Turkey yesterday. The two nations signed a friendship and cooperation agreement and Azerbaijan will receive developmental help.... PLO chairman Yasser Arafat said the United States had broken a promise that Palestinian exiles and Jerusalem Arabs would be invited to multilateral Middle East peace talks due to open tomorrow in Moscow.... Henry Siegman, executive director of the American Jewish Congress, urged Israel yesterday to hal t building settlements on occupied Arab territories to aid the Middle East peace process. AFRICA AND ASIA
Incumbent ruler Maouya Ould Sid' Ahmed Taya has been declared the winner of Mauretania's first free presidential poll.... Chinese Premier Li Peng left Beijing yesterday to visit Western Europe and attend a summit meeting of the UN Security Council in New York.... Bangladesh officials called for international aid yesterday to help more than 65,000 Burmese Muslim refugees flooding over the border to escape what they say is persecution by Rangoon's army.