News In Brief


Israeli and Palestinian negotiators agreed to "renew and intensify" talks beginning Sunday in the Middle East at the conclusion of a summit in Washington. While President Clinton and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu (center) both said the talks were worthwhile, no agreements were reached on major issues. Palestinians called the summit a "setback" because President Arafat (left) returned home with no concessions from Israel. GOP candidate Bob Dole expressed disappointment that Clinton's remarks on the summit "did not include an unequivocal condemnation of the recent violence."

The second annual State of the World Forum opened in San Francisco with speakers criticizing current Israeli policies toward Palestinians. More than 500 people from 55 nations are participating in the five-day forum on "The Price of Peace."

Clinton signed several anticrime measures into law, including one that establishes a national registry for convicted sex offenders and another that cracks down on the spread of methamphetamines.

The Senate passed a bill to fund the Federal Aviation Administration for the next two years. That bill and another expanding federal parks were the two main pieces of legislation keeping senators in Washington before devoting full time to the national elections.

Clinton signed an order barring Burma's government leaders from entering the US. The move comes in the wake of reports that Burmese authorities have arrested hundreds of democracy activists and attempted to seal off the home of democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi. In Burma, Suu Kyi asked the European Commission to adopt sanctions against Burma for using forced and child labor.

The White House ordered the Pentagon to review possible US troop exposure to chemical weapons during the Gulf war. The administration is waiting for a CIA wind-current study that could help determine the number of troops exposed to nerve gas during the destruction of an Iraqi munitions depot in March 1991.

Seven people were indicted in the largest-known theft of combat equipment from a US military base. The men, who include two civilian employees at a training base in Wisconsin, were charged with stealing a World War II Army tank, 17 armored personnel carriers, and more than 100 other combat vehicles worth $13 million from the base. All major items were recovered.

The Clinton administration began a bailout of several rural electric power suppliers unable to survive in the new age of utility deregulation, The Wall Street Journal reported. The multibillion dollar effort aims to help electric cooperatives that requested debt write-downs or write-offs.

Former Los Angeles detective Mark Furhmann pleaded no contest to perjury for saying under oath he hadn't used a racial epithet in a decade during the O.J. Simpson trial. He received three years probation and a $200 fine.

Baltimore became the first city to offer residents an alternative to dialing 911 for less-pressing police calls. If it's not a dire emergency, residents can now dial 311. The Justice Department says most calls to 911 in many communities aren't emergencies, and the phone traffic may be blocking people in need of immediate assistance.

Baltimore Orioles second baseman Roberto Alomar withdrew his appeal of a five-game suspension for spitting in an umpire's face. His decision to serve the suspension next season puts baseball officials and umpires back on a collision course today in a Philadelphia court. The leagues have asked for an injunction to keep umpires from boycotting the rest of the playoffs in protest of Alomar's being allowed to play.

New orders received by US factories dropped 1.9 percent during August - the sharpest rate in 3-1/2 years, the Commerce Department said. The decline adds to signs of a broad-based slowing in industrial activity.


Right-wing activists lined the Tel Aviv-Jerusalem highway to cheer Prime Minister Netanyahu after he arrived home from the Washington summit. But West Bank Palestinians burned a US flag and threw stones at Israeli soldiers in Hebron. Jordan's information minister described the peace process as in "deep crisis." And the Islamic militant group Hamas urged Palestinians to head to "total confrontations" with Israeli forces and settlers. Also, Yigal Amir, the convicted assassin of former Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, Amir's brother, and a third Israeli were sentenced to prison terms of five to 12 years for plotting Rabin's assassination. Amir is already serving a life sentence for Rabin's murder.

President Boris Yeltsin reassured the Russian people he is still in charge. In an unusual six-minute radio address, he also gave security chief Alexander Lebed a vote of confidence. The president endorsed Lebed's peace accord with Chechen separatist leader Zelimkhan Yandarbiyev, who arrived in Moscow for talks with Lebed and others.

Presidents Alija Izetbegovic of Bosnia and Slobodan Milosevic of Serbia agreed to normalize diplomatic relations at a meeting in Paris, French President Jacques Chirac said. Also UN peacekeepers in Eastern Slavonia began a cash-for-weapons exchange. Eastern Slavonia, the last sliver of Serb-held land in eastern Croatia, was officially demilitarized in August when Serb rebels were forced to dismantle. But many weapons remain in private hands.

Sri Lanka's Tamil rebels blasted power and telecommunications stations and attacked a police post, killing at least 10 people. More than 46,000 people have died in the 13-year conflict over a homeland for the island's Tamil minority.

Canadian auto workers went on strike against GM after talks broke down over outsourcing, the practice of relying on low-cost, outside suppliers.

Amnesty International accused Afghanistan's Taliban militia of conducting a "reign of terror." Amnesty said the Taliban, who captured the Afghan capital of Kabul late last week, had arrested as many as 1,000 supporters of the former government.

China released democracy activist Tong Yi, secretary to veteran dissident Wei Jingsheng, after she finished a 2-1/2-year prison term for "reeducation through labor." Wei began serving a 14-year sentence last year.

South African President Nelson Mandela said he would take special steps to see that justice is done, if apartheid supporters were involved in the 1986 murder of Swedish Prime Minister Olof Palme. Sweden said it would send investigators to South Africa to follow up on information disclosed last week by a former police colonel.

Algerian security forces killed Yacine Amara, an Armed Islamic Group emir, and eight of his followers in a day-long siege. Amara was accused of being behind the slayings of dozens of civilians and officials.

The election of Armenian President Ter-Petrossian was called into question by official European observers. Officials of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe reported "very serious breaches" of Armenian election law.

UN Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali expressed shock at reports of weekend massacres in Liberia. UN reports said a "cold-blooded massacre" took place at Sinje in Grand Cape Mount County, leaving 17 civilians dead, many more wounded. More than 1,000 Liberians fled the area in the wake of the attack.

Polish poet Wislawa Szymborska won the Nobel Prize for Literature. This year's $1.12 million prize was the most generous ever awarded.


''I especially appeal to schoolchildren. Do not be afraid of your superiors,

and ask them the most pointed questions. You have every right to do this."

-- Russian President Boris Yeltsin, in a radio address asking elected officials to visit schools and teach a class.

Kix Brooks and Ronnie Dunn became the first duo to win the Country Music Association's award for Entertainer of the Year. George Strait was named Best Male Vocalist. Patty Loveless won for Best Female Vocalist.

Help is on the way for US teachers who are not yet computer-literate. A coalition of educational groups, teachers unions, and high-tech companies has launched a grass-roots initiative. Four thousand volunteers will train five teachers each. Registration is by e-mail at

Getting married and hoping to avoid a pile of kitchen gadgets from guests at your wedding? A new Federal Housing Administration program lets couples start a bridal registry account at participating banks. Guests can contribute toward a down payment on something more substantial: a house.


Booker Prize Nominees

Britain's 1996 Booker Prize for Fiction will be awarded Oct. 29. Here are the titles and authors nominated this year, and a brief description of each novel:

Beryl Bainbridge for "Every Man for Himself" (About the 1912 sinking of the Titanic.)

Graham Swift for "Last Orders" (A butcher's ashes are scattered at sea.)

Sena Mackay for "The Orchard on Fire" (A couple runs a provincial tearoom in 1953.)

Margaret twood for "Alias Grace" (A woman is imprisoned for murdering her employer and his lover.)

Rohinton Mistry for "A Fine Balance" (Four characters during a state of emergency in India in the mid-1970s.)

Seamus Dean for "Reading in the Dark" (A boy narrator is enclosed in two worlds - one legendary, the other actual.)

- Associated Press

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