News In Brief

After a firm handshake, Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and North Korean leader Kim Jong Il began historic talks in the isolated communist state. In a three-hour meeting, Albright presented a letter from President Clinton - who also may visit soon - that laid out possibilities for further developments in bilateral relations. Kim and Albright also discussed US concern over North Korea's missile program and its export of weapons to Iran and Syria, although no agreements were expected. The talks, which were to resume today, are the latest step in North Korea's efforts to enter the world stage. In the past year, Kim also has met the presidents of China, Russia, and South Korea.

With two weeks until election day, both Al Gore and George W. Bush launched concerted efforts to win over undecided or apathetic voters. The vice president was to begin what he called a "kitchen table" campaign, in which he would meet individual families to focus on such close-to-home issues as education and healthcare. Bush, meanwhile, was to set out on a "barnstorm for reform" campaign, in which he would emphasize his plans for government improvement and Social Security. Twenty-eight Republican governors were to join him in the effort. Above, Bush laughs with three of them: Dirk Kempthorne of Idaho, Christine Todd Whitman of New Jersey, and George Pataki of New York.

Almost six months into the longest talent strike in Hollywood history, negotiators for actors and the advertising industry announced tentative agree- ment on a new contract. Details were unavailable as the Monitor went to press, although presumably the two sides had resolved differences over pay for TV commercials. A joint board of the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists is to consider endorsement of the deal Saturday.

A demonstration against police brutality in Los Angeles Sunday resulted in officers firing rubber bullets and three people being arrested for assault. The rally was part of a national protest scheduled for more than 50 cities, notably New York, where an estimated 2,000 gathered. The Los Angeles event turned unruly, police said, after some protesters threw gallon-sized jars and broken glass at officers. The rally was estimated at about 1,500 strong and concentrated on alleged corruption at L.A.'s Rampart Station.

Today could be the last opportunity to ensure front-row seating at the 2002 winter Olympic Games - with a midnight deadline for early-ticket purchases. But regular ordering will be open until Dec. 12. Tickets are selling faster than expected, a spokesman for the Salt Lake Organizing Committee said. More than $40 million worth of tickets has been sold to US buyers alone, and more than half of the seats for the freestyle skiing, figure skating, giant slalom, and snowboarding competitions have been snapped up.

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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