News In Brief


The Senate was expected to approve a $1.62 trillion spending plan for fiscal 1997. The measure is a compromise between similar House and Senate budgets approved earlier in a dramatic 216 to 211 vote. The plan would cut health care and other domestic programs over the next six years, include a $500-per-child tax credit, and increase defense spending slightly. It also would allow $4 billion more in spending next year than the Senate wanted. And it would yield higher deficits over the next two years than the $130 billion the Congressional Budget Office expects for 1996.

In two 5-to-4 votes, the Supreme Court struck down congressional districting plans from Texas and North Carolina. The plans were drawn to give black and Hispanic voters more clout. (Story, Page 1.) The court also overturned a lower-court ruling that ordered increased sentencing for the two former Los Angeles police officers convicted in the 1991 beating of black motorist Rodney King.

The FBI began investigating a fire at a predominantly black church in Enid, Okla. A police sergeant confirmed it appeared to be deliberately set. Some 33 southern black churches have been destroyed by fire in the past 18 months. Federal officials believe racial hatred may be behind the string of arson attacks.

The FBI packed up its tent near the "freemen" compound as signs abounded that the 81-day standoff was nearing an end. Three FBI passenger vans were parked at a nearby church, apparently in preparation for the freemen's departure. But the framework for the group's surrender is fragile, a federal official said.

The US is filing a complaint with the World Trade Organization, accusing Japan of erecting massive trade barriers to the sale of Eastman Kodak's film, the White House announced. The move came instead of sanctions against Japan, but the US asked Kodak to go to Japan's Fair Trade Commission with its complaint.

Sgt. William Kreutzer Jr. was sentenced to death for murdering a soldier and injuring 18 others. He opened fire on the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg, N.C., while they were exercising.

Presidential hopeful Bob Dole denied Democrats' accusations his campaign exceeded preconvention spending limits by at least $343,751. The party filed a complaint with election officials. Dole retaliated by criticizing President Clinton for accepting campaign funds when he has no primary challengers, The Wall Street Journal reported.

The House voted 212 to 210 to allow tobacco growers to continue receiving federally subsidized crop insurance and advice from extension agents. The small $25 million subsidy is part of a $53.1 billion spending bill for the Agriculture Department and other agencies.

Energy Secretary Hazel O'Leary was to be questioned by a House Commerce subcommittee about 16 trips she took at a cost of $4.5 million. She says the trips were worthwhile, but acknowledges management mistakes in how some department funds were spent.

Hillary Rodham Clinton will be named by Senate Whitewater Committee Republicans as their only suspect in the disappearance of her legal billing records, The New York Daily News said.

The Navy halted all flights of its largest transport helicopters after discovering problems with a bearing in the main rotor. The problem was discovered during an investigation of the May 9 Super Stallion crash in Connecticut that killed four crew members, officials said.

Arson is being considered as the possible cause of a wildfire north of Anchorage that destroyed more than 300 homes. Investigators say there were multiple ignition points.

Retail sales rose 0.8 percent in May, the third advance in four months. Analysts attributed the increase to a rebound in automobile sales.

McDonnell Douglas Corp. is about to purchase the space and defense divisions of Rockwell International Corp. for an estimated $3.5 billion to $5 billion, The Washington Post reported.


Russian presidential candidates finished their final leg of campaigning before Sunday's elections. There are six main candidates, but the election is seen primarily as a contest between President Yeltsin and Communist leader Gennady Zyuganov.

Iraq said it will not allow UN inspectors to enter sites it considers crucial to national security. The UN Security Council adopted a resolution calling for the "immediate, unconditional, and unrestricted access to any and all areas." Baghdad said the standoff shouldn't hinder an oil-exports deal with the UN.

China denied it exported nuclear-capable M-11 missiles to Pakistan after the US State Department expressed concern about a Washington Times report of such a sale. The newspaper reported US intelligence agencies had concluded that, for the first time, Pakistan has nuclear capability. Meanwhile, US negotiators questioned China's efforts to crack down on copyright piracy in the final round of crucial trade talks in Beijing. The US has threatened to begin imposing about $2 billion in punitive tariffs Monday if a resolution on copyright piracy isn't reached.

Colombia's Congress absolved President Ernesto Samper of charges he accepted money from the Cali drug cartel for his 1994 campaign. The 111 to 43 vote was overwhelmingly in Samper's favor in a move that is sure to anger the US, business leaders, and other critics. Also, former President Cesar Gaviria's brother was released two months after being kidnapped by suspected leftist guerrillas.

An Indonesia-bound DC-10 caught fire at the Fukuoka Airport in southern Japan, killing at least three passengers and injuring 80.

Inspectors picked through the debris of two Blackhawk helicopters that collided during a nighttime exercise in Brisbane, Australia, killing 18 servicemen and injuring 10. It's being called Australia's worst peacetime accident in more than three decades.

Bangladesh's Election Commission ordered a second round of voting at 116 polling centers. Results won't be available until a new round of voting is completed at the stations. Awami League leader Hasina Wajed appeared likely to win power for the first time but may face a hung parliament.

In many Albanian villages, the number of ballots cast in elections outnumbered the number registered voters, the Organization for Security in Europe charged. Albania's ruling Democratic Party won the May 26 elections. Repeat elections in 17 districts where voting irregularities favored the winning party have been scheduled for Sunday, following international criticism.

The number of major armed conflicts dropped from 32 to 30 in 1995, but new wars are still breaking out, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute said. The number of major armed conflicts has been declining since 1989.

NATO members will decide whether to extend the Bosnia peace mission into next year at a two-day meeting in Florence, Italy, to review Bosnia's faltering peace process. In Brussels, France attended its first formal meeting of NATO defense ministers in more than 30 years.

UN delegates meeting in Istanbul scrapped controversial references to abortion in an action plan summarizing the work of the UN conference on cities, women activists said. The Vatican and Muslim countries had opposed references supporting children having abortions without parental consent. References to reproductive health were also removed.


'We're through with the mouse until the company cleans up its act.'

-- Southern Baptist Convention delegate Gary Hughes. The convention voted to boycott Walt Disney Company because of liberal policies toward homosexual employees and adult-themed movies released by Disney subsidiaries.

Atronomers trying to calculate the age of the universe hit a snag: A galaxy that appears older than the cosmos. The find may force scientists to rethink the theory of how the universe was created, astronomers said. Stars from the galaxy are so distant it takes 10 billion years for light from them to reach Earth. The stars appeared to be 3.5 billion years old at that time - 1.5 billion years older than the universe is supposed to be under standard assumptions.

Amy Patel and Brendan Scott have perfect attendance records that rival Cal Ripken's. The two Massachusetts graduates of Braintree High School didn't miss a single day of school from kindergarten through 12th grade. That's more than 2,300 school days.

A 39-1/2 pound uncut sapphire may be the world's largest. The football-sized, 89,850-carat stone was unearthed in Madascar by a European mining company, a Bangkok gem dealer says. The world's largest cut sapphire, the "Lone Star," weighs in at 9,719.5 carats.

Cincinnati Reds owner Marge Schott agreed to give up daily control of her baseball team through the 1998 season. Schott was threatened with suspension by baseball's executive council after angering officials with statements about Adolf Hitler, working women, and Asians.


US Powerhouses

Time Magazine's 10 most powerful individuals in the US.

1. President Bill Clinton

2. Microsoft's Bill Gates

3. Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan

4. Media mogul Rupert Murdoch

5. Walt Disney Company's Michael Eisner

6. General Electric chief executive Jack Welch

7. Intel chief Andrew Grove

8. General Motors Company's Jack Smith

9. Fidelity Chief Ned Johnson

10. House Speaker Newt Gingrich

- Time Magazine/AP

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