The US The US hopes to have a negotiating team back in Yugoslavia as early as Friday. White House foreign policy advisers met yesterday to select replacements for the three key US diplomats killed Saturday in an accident near Sarajevo. President Clinton planned to leave his Wyoming vacation to attend memorial services for the three at Arlington National Cemetery today. ABC News apologized to two tobacco companies Monday, in a deal to settle more than $10 billion in lawsuits. Philip Morris Cos. and R.J. Reynolds Co. sued after ABC's ''Day One'' alleged in 1994 that the cigarette makers added nicotine to keep people addicted. Although ABC recanted its charge of deliberate ''spiking,'' it stood by the main focus of the report - that cigarette manufacturers control nicotine levels. A federal judge took 17 minutes to approve an antitrust deal between Microsoft and the Department of Justice. Microsoft agreed to eliminate anti-competitive sales incentives. But the software giant remains under federal scrutiny over Windows 95. (Stories, Pages 1, 12, and 13.) NASA plans to privatize its shuttle program within a year, it said Monday, responding to planned budget cutbacks. Lockheed Martin and Rockwell International - the shuttle's two major contractors - have already formed a joint venture to bid on the $3 billion-per-year project. A NASA spokesman said the space agency wants to inject greater accountability into the shuttle program's management process through privatization. NASA will shift its emphasis toward research while the contractor runs shuttle flights. Media mogul Ted Turner continues to quest for money to finance a CBS buyout offer. He wants to beat out Westinghouse's $5.4 billion bid. On Monday, Turner dropped talks with cash-rich King World - which distributes ''Oprah.'' Other possible investors include Microsoft and Seagram, the MCA studio owner. The deficit is still growing, but not as fast. It grew by $13.6 billion in July 1995 and $33.2 billion in July 1994 - a 60 percent decrease, the Treasury Department said Monday. The administration expects the total 1995 deficit to be down some $41 billion from last year. One expert attributed the decline to higher revenues, largely due to a stronger economy, and federal spending cuts. America's ''at risk'' education system is improving, the Education Department said Monday. Dropout rates are down from 13.9 percent in 1982 to 11 percent in 1993. Students are taking tougher science courses: 32 percent took chemistry in 1982, while 65 percent did so in 1992. But all students need to bolster English skills, and minorities lag behind US norms in most areas. Skilled blue-collar workers may hold the key to the White House in 1996, a group of researchers said Monday. Factory workers or building-trade employees have little loyalty to either Democrats or Republicans, and are therefore influenced the most by party strategy and candidate popularity, the study said. Wal-Mart settled a religious-discrimination suit Monday with a man who refused to work on Sundays. The nation's largest retailer agreed to train managers to accommodate religious workers' needs, the Wall Street Journal reported yesterday. Lawyers familiar with discrimination law say Wal-Mart's program could be copied by other firms, and thus make religious-discrimination classes as common as gender or race-bias training. Passengers on the Southeast Airlines commuter flight that crashed in Georgia on Monday credit the pilot's flying with saving many of them. Although five people died, including the pilot, he swerved around power lines, avoiding more casualties. President Bush's press secretary, Marlin Fitzwater, tells of secret staff attempts to drop Vice President Quayle from the 1992 ticket and of Oval Office fisticuffs in his book to be published this fall. ''I could never get away with taking Quayle off the ticket,'' he quotes Bush as saying. The World Fighting in northwest Bosnia appeared to intensify yesterday. Sarajevo was rocked by Serb shelling yesterday afternoon. At least 14 people were wounded, one woman was killed. Meanwhile, the UN said Monday it will replace peacekeepers defending the ''safe area'' Gorazde with 50 unarmed observers, raising the ire of Bosnia's Muslim-lead government. Three girls were killed Sunday when Gorazde came under attack by Serb forces.The US vowed to protect Gorazde from the air in future attacks. (Stories, Page 1 and 19.) As many as 60,000 Hutu Rwandan refugees fled into Zaire's hills to avoid repatriation by Zairian soldiers. The soldiers marched an estimated 11,000 refugees from Goma, Zaire, camps toward the Rwandan border Tuesday. Zaire has given no reason for the action, but aid agencies say the country is trying to pressure the UN refugee agency to find another country to take the refugees. Zaire has the largest population of refugees in the world. (Story, Page 1.) When President Hussein's son-in-law and weapons chief, Lt. Gen. Hussein Kamel Hassan, defected to Jordan, he took billions of dollars with him, Iraqi opposition leaders and Western diplomats said Monday. The money is in secret bank accounts worldwide and dummy companies set up while he was industry minister. Since the defections, Iraq has handed over documents to the UN detailing a sizable secret germ warfare program with a sophisticated delivery system. In a rare crackdown, Mexico's attorney general said Monday it is investigating the ruling party, PRI, for massive overspending in the Tabasco state governor's election. Tobasco Gov.. Roberto Madrazo Pintado flew to Mexico City to file suit in Mexico's Supreme Court, alleging the investigation is illegal. He accused Attorney General Antonio Lozano, a member of the PAN, of political bias. Another party, the PRD, says 16 crates of documents it produced in June proves the PRI spent 60 times the legal limit on the campaign. Israel should skip interim Palestinian self-rule in the West Bank and pursue permanent settlement negotiations, Israeli President Ezer Weizman said in an interview with Israel's mass circulation Maariv yesterday. Foreign Minister Peres said Monday talks with the PLO would resume after funerals for those killed in Monday's suicide bombing. A reservoir storing effluent from a collapsed gold mine has been spewing tens of millions of gallons of cyanide-tainted water into Guyana's biggest river, the Essequibo, since Sunday. The spill occurred 100 miles west of Georgetown, the nation's capital, and is Guyana's worst environmental disaster. Japan's key index of leading economic indicators dropped sharply in June, the government announced yesterday. The index, closely watched as a barometer of trends in economic activity for the following six months, fell to 9.1 in June on a scale of 100, down from 16.7 in May. A figure below 50 generally indicates a coming economic contraction. Rebel army officers freed Sao Tome and Principe President Miguel Trovoada yesterday and returned to their barracks after signing an accord, ending a week-long coup attempt in the African twin-island nation. The rebels were protesting poverty. Western hostages held by militants in Kashmir began their eighth week of captivity yesterday. Indian officials, in phone contact with the rebels, hope for a release without a raid. A jailed leader of the Cali drug cartel, Ivan Urdinola, was transferred to another Colombian prison Monday, following suspicions he was running his drug empire from his cell. Etcetera The amount of violence shown on British TV has almost halved in the past 10 years, according to an independent study. Research set up after the 1993 murder of a Liverpool toddler by two young boys showed that violence accounted for just 0.61 percent of the output of Britain's four TV stations. The manager of an electronics store was on the phone with his wife, talking about canceling her credit card, which had just been stolen. Just then, two men walked in with the card and tried to buy some video equipment. He called the police, who arrested the pair. A dog has been enlisted to help suckle five tiger cubs at a breeding center in northeast China. The dog at first refused but nursed the cubs after its own puppies were mixed with them. Best-Selling Books, Hardcover Fiction 1. ''From Potter's Field,'' Patricia Cornwell (Scribner) 2. ''Memnoch the Devil,'' Anne Rice (Knopf) 3. ''Beach Music,'' Pat Conroy (Doubleday) 4. ''Lightning,'' Danielle Steel (Delacorte) 5. ''The Rainmaker,'' John Grisham (Doubleday) 6. ''The Celestine Prophecy,'' James Redfield (Warner) 7. ''The Bridges of Madison County,'' Robert James Waller (Warner) 8. ''Dangerous to Know,'' Barbara Taylor Bradford (HarperCollins) 9. ''Rose Madder,'' Stephen King (Viking) 10. ''The Witness,'' Sandra Brown (Warner) - Publishers Weekly '' No one can replace them, but we will reconstitute the team.'' - Assistant Secretary of State Richard Holbrooke, on the three US diplomats killed Saturday.