News In Brief

The US

President Clinton was to discuss his policy on Bosnia at the Air Force Academy in Colorado. Without US troops on the ground, but with 2,000 Marines on ships near Bosnia, any decision to inject US forces into the war there carries large political risks. Senator McCain said a commando raid to rescue hostages would be ill-advised and Congress should be consulted before such action. US Balkans negotiator Robert Frasure, meanwhile, was to reopen talks with Serbian President Milosevic on recognizing Bosnia and Croatia as independent. (Story, Page 1.)

The economy slowed dramatically in the first quarter, with GDP growing at a 2.7 percent annual rate -- the weakest performance in a year and a half, the Commerce Department said. Analysts said they were surprised by the downward revision. Sales of new homes fell 2.7 percent in April, Commerce reported.

The US and other major industrial countries launched a surprise defense of the dollar, buying massive amounts of the currency to strengthen it against the mark and the yen.

A group linked to House Speaker Gingrich wants to do away with the Federal Communications Commission. The Progress and Freedom Foundation said it would replace the FCC with an agency that only collects technical information to help federal courts resolve disputes among companies over airwaves rights. (Story, Page 9.)

The White House said its review of affirmative-action programs won't come out until later in the summer. A review by staffers found little fault so far with current practices and indicated that preferences based on sex and race are justifiable, but not quotas.

GOP presidential hopeful Gramm said he will withdraw from a Senate committee investigating Whitewater ''in fairness'' to Clinton and the Senate.

House hearings into the 1993 federal assault on the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas, will begin July 12. The assault ended with the deaths of 80 cult members. Senate hearing dates have not been set.

Consumer groups said the meat industry is trying to derail a new food-safety system designed to prevent the kind of tainted-hamburger incidents that caused the deaths of three children two years ago. Agriculture Department hearings on meat-safety rules, including testing, are under way in Washington.

Plea-bargain talks between Michael Fortier and prosecutors in the Oklahoma City bombing case stalled because Fortier -- a friend of suspect Timothy McVeigh -- reportedly isn't giving information to investigators.

Kirk Kerkorian withdrew his already failed bid to take over Chrysler Corporation.

A Federal appeals court reaffirmed its ban on a standard law-enforcement practice in the war against drugs. In doing so, the court turned down a Clinton request to review the decision. The court ruled in September that a drug defendant's property could not be seized in a civil action if the defendant was being prosecuted in a criminal proceeding.

The government should approve a new goof-proof system of children's car seats that would save hundreds of youngsters' lives, a federally appointed panel said. It recommended that a child-seat anchor be as common as air bags and nonskid brakes.

The number of firearm suicides, especially among children, is rising in the US, two gun-control groups said. In 1992, 37,776 Americans died by firearms. About 48 percent of them were suicides, 47 percent homicides, and the rest accidental.

Five days into a US-wide recall of 8 billion cigarettes, many of the possibly tainted smokes were still being sold, and smokers seemed to be ignoring offers for refunds.

A former coal-mine superintendent who said he had paid off state and federal inspectors for decades was sentenced in Kentucky for falsifying inspection logs and skipping safety checks. Miners were sent underground after Bruce Hurley falsified the records at Mountaintop Restoration Inc.'s No. 1 mine, investigators said.

The World

The thunder of tank, mortar, and artillery fire continued to rattle Sarajevo yesterday. Fighting also resumed in Gorazde. In Sarajevo, the Serbs freed six French UN soldiers Tuesday but presented new demands to the UN, including guarantees of no more NATO air attacks. Two transport planes landed in Split, Croatia, with an advance party of 36 British soldiers -- the first of up to 6,200 reinforcements. Russian President Yeltsin warned against the use of force to end the war and urged the lifting of sanctions against Serbia.

Russia's foreign minister finalized a military cooperation treaty with NATO but repeated Russian fears about alliance plans to accept its Eastern European neighbors as members. Foreign Minister Kozyrev also endorsed a document laying out the special relationship that Russia is to have with NATO on issues ranging from peacekeeping to arms control. (Story, Page 6.) Russia said its forces had advanced in rebel-held southern Chechnya, and NATO foreign ministers urged a truce in the Caucasus region.

PLO-Israeli talks on extending Palestinian autonomy stalled yesterday over the scope of Palestinian powers in Gaza and the West Bank. The two sides said they would resume talks next week in Cairo to try to resolve the differences that Palestinians said threaten the negotiations. Israeli gunners blasted suspected guerrilla positions in south Lebanon with tank and artillery fire after guerrillas fired rockets into northern Israel.

The US said it will hold talks with Japan in Geneva next month to try to resolve their trade dispute. The development came a day after Japan's trade minister sent a letter to US trade representative Kantor urging him to rescind plans for punitive tariffs on Japanese luxury cars.

Police found dozens of hidden machine-gun parts and learned of germ warfare experiments in their probe of the sect accused in the Tokyo subway gas attack, media reports said yesterday.

Prosecutors investigating last year's killing of a presidential candidate in Mexico want to rearrest and try a suspect released last month. Judicial authorities have eight days to rule on the request to reinstate charges against Tranqilino Sanchez Venegas, who was arrested as an accomplice in the March 1994 killing of Luis Donaldo Colosio, the presidential candidate of the governing Institutional Revolutionary Party.

Liberian warlord Charles Taylor will visit Nigeria tomorrow for unprecedented talks with its military leader on ending Liberia's civil war. In the UN's second attempt to halt Africa's most enduring civil war, a battalion of Uruguayan infantrymen arrived in Angola on a peacekeeping mission. Belgium, meanwhile, issued international arrest warrants for three fugitive Rwandans suspected in last year's ethnic massacres in the central African nation. In Ethiopia, the ruling coalition won a landslide victory in that country's first multiparty general elections.

An Amnesty International report described Iran's human-rights record as ''appalling.'' It claimed Iran has executed tens of thousands of government opponents in the last 16 years and has held political prisoners without trial. Iran dismissed the allegations, saying Amnesty simply repeated previous allegations. Human Rights Watch/Asia, meanwhile, said China has tortured political prisoners and jailed some on trumped-up charges in the year since President Clinton separated human rights and preferential trade status.

The health of the world's children has improved dramatically in recent years, but worsening poverty may put many at risk, UNICEF officials said. The International Red Cross, meanwhile, said nations are shirking their duty to see that prisoners of war, civilians, and the wounded are given special protection during times of war.


Snow and icy cold they can handle. But a week-long record heat wave has Muscovites sizzling. It got so hot Tuesday that Moscow's airport closed because a runway melted. At 90 degrees, it was as hot as in Havana.

Copenhagen's newest public transit system gives new meaning to the word. About 500 bicycles went into service Tuesday. For a small deposit, anyone can borrow a bike.

World chess champion Gary Kasparov is getting set to play a powerful chess computer provided by IBM.

Top 10 Singles

1. ''Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman?'' Bryan Adams, A&M

2. ''This Is How We Do It,'' Montell Jordan, (Island) (Platinum)

3. ''I'll Be There for You (You're All I Need to Get By),'' Method Man featuring Mary J. Blige (Def Jam)

4. ''Total Eclipse of the Heart,'' Nicki French, (Critique)

5. ''Water Runs Dry,'' Boyz II Men, (Motown)

6. ''Freak Like Me,'' Adina Howard, (Mecca Don-EastWest) (Gold)

7. ''Don't Take It Personal (Just One of Dem Days),'' Monica, (Rowdy)

8. ''I Know,'' Dionne Farris, (Columbia)

9. ''I Believe,'' Blessid Union of Souls, (EMI)

10. ''Red Light Special,'' TLC, (LaFace) (Gold)

(Platinum signifies more than 1 million copies sold; Gold signifies more than 500,000 copies sold.)

Billboard-Soundscan Inc. Broadcast Data Systems

''This will be an exhaustive examination of the Waco tragedy so that at the conclusion of the hearings the American public will feel they have all the answers.''

Representative McCollum, chairman of the Judiciary Crime Subcommittee

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