News In Brief


President Clinton said he signed deployment orders to send US troops to Kuwait, but declined to say how many troops would be sent to help patrol the no-fly zone in Iraq. Clinton also briefed congressional leaders on the administration's actions in Iraq. The meeting came as tensions with Baghdad appeared to be easing. The White House has said it is not attempting to force a showdown with Saddam Hussein, and Iraq has begun to comply with US demands for avoiding further confrontation.

Clinton is seeking to make it easier for workers who change jobs to keep their pensions. He was to announce proposed Treasury Department regulations that would remove barriers against transferring retirement savings and guidelines that would discourage employers from limiting investment options of former employees who leave their savings in place. Also, Clinton was expected to declare 1.7 million acres of federally owned land in Utah a national monument.

The Commission on Presidential Debates wants to exclude Reform Party candidate Ross Perot. Perot could still be included if both the Clinton and Dole camps insisted. But GOP nominee Bob Dole's objections would appear to preclude that. Clinton said he favors Perot's participation.

The space shuttle Atlantis is due to dock tonight with the Russian space station Mir to pick up astronaut Shannon Lucid and drop off supplies and her replacement. Also, mission managers were expected to make a decision about whether to have Atlantis return early. One of three hydraulic power units used during landing is malfunctioning.

Ford reached a tentative agreement with the United Auto Workers that includes what some call historic job guarantees. Ford promised to maintain at least 95 percent of its union jobs at US plants during the three-year term, a source close to the union said. Ford's 105,025 union workers are expected to ratify the deal by Sept. 29. Separately, negotiators for Chrysler were bogged down in talks with the Canadian Auto Workers, and were said to be unlikely to reach an agreement by last night's deadline.

Two new polls show Dole is narrowing Clinton's lead. A new ABC poll showed the GOP nominee just 8 points behind the president - the closest Dole's come since a short-lived boost from the Republican convention. The survey was the first ABC poll to include vice-presidential nominees. Clinton's lead also eroded in a CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll - but he still had a hefty 16 point lead. That poll had a 4-point margin of error; the ABC poll 4.5.

Recently declassified documents indicate US officials knowingly abandoned 900 US servicemen after the end of the Korean War, The New York Times reported. The House National Security subcommittee on military personnel was to hold hearings on the matter. The revelation fuels growing speculation that US prisoners might still be alive in North Korea. Pyongyang said it is not holding any US citizens.

Industrial output jumped 0.5 percent in August. The increase in total output of the nation's mines, factories, and utilities was due in part to a seasonal surge in electricity output.

Former national security adviser McGeorge Bundy, who played a key role in the Bay of Pigs invasion and US buildup in Vietnam, has died. Clinton praised Bundy, saying he "served presidents Kennedy and Johnson with great distinction during difficult times."

US consumers now have the highest credit-card delinquency rate on record. The American Bankers Association said delinquencies were 3.66 percent during the second quarter - the highest rate since it began collecting data in 1974.

For the first time two Wall Street firms - Merrill Lynch and Bankers Trust - appeared on Working Mother magazine's list of the best 100 companies. The list is based on pay, advancement opportunities for women, child care, flexible hours, and family-friendly benefits.


Bosnia's Muslim President Alija Izetbegovic and candidates to the ruling Serb and Croat parties appeared likely to win election to the three-man presidency. With more than half the votes counted, Izetbegovic had about 430,000 votes compared with 270,000 for Serb Momcilo Krajisnik and 160,000 for Kresimir Zubak, the candidate for the Croatian Democratic Union. According to the Dayton accord, the candidate with the highest vote total becomes the chairman of the presidency.

A senior US state department official planned to hold talks with the head of Iraq's Baghdad-backed Kurdish faction in Ankara, Turkey. Masoud Barzani's forces conquered most of northern Iraq last week. Also, the US received only limited support from its allies. Turkey and Saudi Arabia refused to allow anti-Iraq strikes to be launched from their territories.

The Guatemalan government and leftist rebels plan to sign a partial peace agreement in Mexico City tomorrow that includes a one-third reduction in the country's Army. The accord also gives the president the power to appoint a civilian to head the Defense Ministry. After the signing, new talks will focus on a full cease-fire and drawing the guerrillas back into civilian life.

The EU rejected Britain's request to review a relaxed cattle slaughter plan that would end a global ban on British beef. Earlier, Britain's agricultural minister cited new Oxford University research showing mad cow disease will die out by 2001 even without the slaughter.

The Yugoslav war crimes tribunal in The Hague, Netherlands, rejected a defense motion to drop 21 of 31 charges against Bosnian Serb suspect Dusan Tadic. He is accused of committing war-time atrocities.

Syrian-backed candidates won 21 of 23 seats in the last round of Lebanon's five-stage parliamentary elections. The results determined the final form of the 128-seat half-Christian, half-Muslim parliament. Pro-Syria candidates also won an overwhelming majority in earlier voting rounds.

A police colonel convicted of apartheid-era murders testified in Pretoria that senior South African government officials, including former President P. W. Botha, knew about government offensives on black activists. Eugene de Kock, who was convicted last month on 89 charges, including six murders, is preparing to seek amnesty. It was the first time De Kock has testified at the 18-month trial.

South Korean prosecutors charged 438 radical students en masse with involvement in a violent protests in which a policeman was killed. The youths were among some 5,850 student activists detained by police last month during a demonstration seeking unity with North Korea.

Despite China's protests, Taiwan's President Lee Teng-hui met with Deputy Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers in Taipei to discuss boosting trade. Summers's visit is the first by a high-level US official since Lee angered China by traveling to the US in 1995.

Specialists expressed concern of a chain reaction as radiation levels inside the Chernobyl nuclear power plant's faulty fourth reactor rose sharply this week. Scientists don't have full control over the mass of nuclear fuel still inside 10 years after the reactor exploded, a plant director said.

Russian security chief Alexander Lebed held talks there and announced Russian troops will continue withdrawing from Chechnya.


"The Bosnian Serbs have so far been living in a limbo. Now they have a state, and their leaders will have to play by international rules, or else."

-- A Western diplomat on the upcoming results of Bosnian elections.

A 1912 movie long thought to be lost has resurfaced in a former theater projectionist's basement. William Buffum collected 26 of the films he projected, including "The Life and Death of King Richard III." The 55-minute adaptation of "Richard III" could be the oldest complete US feature film. It will be screened in Los Angeles next month.

Villagers hoisted it out of boiling water with a crane after it cooked for 2-1/2 days. Residents of Zams, Austria, now hope to eat the 1.8 ton, 5-ft.-diameter "appetizer" - but not until it's considered for the title of world's largest liver dumpling.

A Hong Kong teacher passed "Go" to win the 1996 World Monopoly Championship in Monte Carlo. Christopher Woo won $15,140 - the amount of Monopoly money in the game - and a customized Monaco edition. Monopoly, which is available in 75 countries and 26 languages, is regarded as the world's most popular board game.

A World War I veteran was finally awarded a Purple Heart medal - 78 years after a mortar shell wounded him. US Sen. Jim Inhofe presented the medal to Paul Schulze, who missed his chance to collect it during the 1930s.


Family-Friendly Firms

Working Mother magazine singled out these companies as exceptionally progressive in policies toward working mothers in their list of 100 best companies:

Barnett Banks Inc., Jacksonville, Fla.

Eli Lilly and Co., Indianapolis

Hewlett-Packard Co., Palo Alto, Calif.

IBM, Armonk, N.Y.

Johnson & Johnson, New Brunswick, N.J..

MBNA America Bank, NA, Wilmington, Del.

Merck & Co., Inc., Whitehouse Station, N.J

NationsBank Corp., Charlotte, N.C.

Patagonia Inc., Ventura, Calif.

Xerox Corp., Stamford, Conn.

- Working Mother/AP

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