News In Brief

The US

Polls indicated Senator Dole was ahead in all eight states with Republican primaries today. Residents will cast votes in Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Vermont. Also presidential candidate Alan Keyes (above) was escorted away from WSB-TV by Atlanta police after trying to enter the offices to join a candidates' debate. The TV station wanted only the four top-ranked candidates. Also, Dole is projected to win Thursday's New York primary, with Forbes coming in third after Buchanan, according to an opinion poll. (Story, Page 1.)

President Clinton called an emergency meeting of his top advisers to find ways to stop the ''senseless acts of violence'' in the Mideast after a Tel Aviv suicide bombing. Secretary of State Christopher cut short a Caribbean tour to attend. Also, Israel suspended peace talks with Syria in Maryland after another bomb attack in Jerusalem yesterday. (See also World In Brief.)

The Supreme Court gave the government more power to seize property linked to crimes, allowing confiscation of a Michigan woman's car used by her husband for sex with a prostitute. The 5 to 4 ruling bolsters efforts by local, state, and federal prosecutors to enforce forfeiture laws as crime-fighting tools. Also, the court affirmed a lower court ruling that Polk County, Iowa, violated an employee's religious freedom by firing him for holding prayer meetings at work.

Congress expects to vote early this week on the Helms-Burton bill, which aims to restrict foreign investment in Cuba. But a provision allowing US citizens to sue foreign corporations that use confiscated property in Cuba could create ''economic chaos'' with other US trading partners, some Cuba experts say.

Consumer spending dropped by 0.5 percent in January - the sharpest decline in nearly 3 1/2 years. Personal income grew a scant 0.1 percent - the smallest advance in six months. Severe winter weather was blamed for the poor showing.

All the directors of an investment fund that aims to help the Czech and Slovak republics move from communism to private enterprise have quit. The fund's future will be decided by an interim board to be named by President Clinton. The fund is the most troubled of a dozen funds set up by Congress to aid former Soviet-bloc countries.

Apple Computer is planning to disconnect its e-World on-line service by March 31, The Wall Street Journal said. Apple reportedly is considering setting up a variety of Web sites targeting markets such as education, desktop publishing, and multimedia.

A freight train in central Wisconsin derailed, sparking a fire that burned several buildings. Propane tanks were in danger of exploding from the fire. And 17 of the 35 cars that derailed were carrying hazardous materials. No one was injured in the accident.

The largest state prison survey ever found children under age 18 are the victims of two-thirds of the sex offenders in state prisons. That's why so may states are passing laws requiring neighbors be notified when paroled sex criminals move into their area, experts say. Relatives and acquaintances, rather than strangers, most often perpetrate the crime, the Justice Department said.

The federal government is taking over San Francisco's public housing authority following a scathing review that found filthy and unsafe conditions throughout its complexes. Mayor Willie Brown called for the resignation of the authority's director and the housing commission.

Magic Johnson removed himself from consideration for this year's US Olympic basketball team. Other players deserve a chance and the schedule is too grueling, he said.

Mail carriers in Los Angeles are delivering peace of mind to the elderly and the disabled along their routes. Under a program called Carrier Alert, some 5,000 postal workers are keeping an eye on certain homes and call for help if htey notice mail piling up or other telltale signs.

The World

The Muslim militant group Hamas claimed responsibility for the suicide bombing outside a busy Tel Aviv shopping mall that killed at least 12 people and wounded 100. The blast came a day after a suicide bomb attack, the third in eight days, killed 18 people aboard a bus in Jerusalem. A total of 44 people were killed in those attacks, also claimed by the Muslim militant group Hamas. Just before the Tel Aviv attack, Israeli troops raided a West Bank refugee camp and arrested 30 wanted militants. (Editorial, Page 20.)

Bosnian Serb Gen. Djordje Djukic pleaded innocent to war- crimes charges at his arraignment before the UN War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague. He is indicted for his role in the Serb shelling of Sarajevo that killed some 10,000 civilians. Also, the exodus of Bosnian Serbs from the suburbs of Sarajevo continued. And, for the first time, Bosnian Serb leaders appealed to the Serbian government in Belgrade to assist in the evacuation.

Several Russian leftist parties formed a bloc to back Communist Party leader Gennady Zyuganov, the front-runner in June presidential elections. The coalition includes former Soviet Premier Nikolai Ryzhkov - who came in second to President Yeltsin in 1991 elections - and Agrarian Party leader Mikhail Lapshin. Also, some 1,500 civilians fled Sernovodosk, Chechnya, as Russian troops shelled the town following an ambush by Chechen rebels.

China's National People's Congress began a two-week meeting in Beijing today drawing close to 3,000 delegates from across the country. Economic and crime issues are expected to dominate the agenda. Above, a military band member plays in Beijing's Great Hall of the People, where the National People's Congress meets.

Jose Maria Aznar sought allies to form a government after his conservative Popular Party fell short of an absolute majority in Spain's 350-seat Parliament. His party won 156 seats. Premier Felipe Gonzalez's Spanish Socialist Worker's Party - defeated after 13 years in power - took 141. Popular Party leaders told prospective allies that they might offer Cabinet posts in exchange for support. (Story, Page 7.)

Permanent residents of Hong Kong will continue to have visa-free access to Britain even after the colony's handover to China in 1997, Prime Minister John Major said in Hong Kong. He also warned that London will take legal action if Beijing fails to honor the 1984 Sino-British pact governing the handover.

Japan's opposition lawmakers staged a sit-in at the parliament to block a vote on an unpopular bailout plan. Polls indicate nearly 90 percent of Japanese oppose the plan to spend $6.5 billion to help clear up bad debts of private firms that loaned to real estate speculators.

Australian Prime Minister-elect John Howard tried to ease fears among domestic and foreign investors after unions threatened to strike to protest his economic plan. The unions were major allies of outgoing Prime Minister Paul Keating. Howard's conservative coalition won the elections in a landslide.

A delegation from Sinn Fein, the political wing of the IRA, was barred from entering a Belfast conference hall hosting preliminary Irish peace talks. Both Britain and Ireland declared Sinn Fein would not be allowed into the talks unless the IRA guarantees a cease-fire. The talks are aimed at agreeing on details for May elections, which will elect representatives to all-party talks.

Two former UN officials, Ahmed Tejan Kabbah and John Karefa-Smart, are expected to face a run-off for Sierra Leone's presidency. The first multiparty elections in almost 29 years failed to produce a clear winner.


The three remaining Beatles turned down a $225-million offer for a concert tour of North America, Europe, and Japan. The group also released ''Real Love,'' the second single based on an old John Lennon tape.


History is being rewritten at Pearl Harbor. The US government has hired four historians to correct at least 50 mistakes at the USS Arizona memorial. No one has a bigger bone to pick than Pfc. George Baker. He is listed as killed in action. But he actually survived the attack.


Setting a new sartorial standard for the US Senate, Ben Nighthorse Campbell dressed in coat and tie - and black leather motorcycle pants - for a Banana Republic ad. The Colorado senator, known for his bolo ties and silver-flecked ponytail, is shown astride a motorcycle.

World's Busiest Airports

Chicago's O'Hare handled 67.2 million passengers last year - up 1.2 percent from 1994. And Memphis - home of Federal Express - handled the most packages - 1.6 million tons.

millions of passengers last year

1. Chicago O'Hare 67.2

2. Atlanta Hartsfield 57.7

3. London Heathrow 54.4

4. Dallas-Fort Worth 54.3

5. Los Angeles International 53.9

6. Tokyo Haneda 45.8

7. Frankfurt, Germany 38.1

8. Miami International 33.2

9. Denver 31.0

10. New York-JFK 30.3

- Airports Council International/AP

'' I'm pretty sure I'm alive. Yep. Still here.''

- George Baker, who was listed as killed in action on the USS Arizona memorial at Pearl Harbor.

He actually survived the attack. (See item below.)

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