Aiken Standard (Newspaper) - March 18, 1998, Aiken, South Carolina
From the Associated Press
Page 2A Wednesday, March 18, 1998 Aiken, South Carolina
Israel, Palestinians tentatively agree to new peace talks
UNITED NATIONS — In a move that could rekindle Mideast peace talks, Israel and the Palestinians have tentatively agreed to meet under Swiss auspices to discuss Israeli settlements in the West Bank, officials said Tuesday.
European and Arab U.N. delegates downplayed that initiative and passed a General Assembly resolution calling for a meeting with wider international representation — a move immediately attacked by the United States, which backs the Swiss proposal.
_ Israeli U.N. Ambassador Dore Gold told The Associated Press that Israel considered the Swiss proposal pragmatic and was ready to go ahead. Palestinian observer Nasser al-Kidwa said his people were ready to cooperate with Switzerland, but preferred a U.N. General Assembly resolution that called for a meeting of all signatory nations to the Geneva Convention, which bans the usurpation of land by an occupying power.
Experts: Saddam can not be indicted
UNITED NATIONS - U.S.-backed limits on a proposed permanent international tribunal probably would block some of the United States’ own goals for the court, including a war-crimes trial for Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, human rights groups say.
Experts from more than 150 countries started a three-week session this week to prepare for an international conference in Rome in June.
That conference will draft a treaty to establish the world’s Hussein first standing international criminal court to try cases of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity wrhen national courts cannot — or will not — do the job.
Cambodian prince sentenced in plot
PHNOM PENH, Cambodia — A military court found deposed co-premier Prince Norodom Ranariddh guilty in absentia today of conspiring with Khmer Rouge guerrillas to overthrow the government and sentenced him to 30 years in prison.
Ranariddh has been in exile since he was ousted in a July coup by his rival co-prime minister, Hun Sen. The trial was both an attempt by Hun Sen to discredit his former colleague and part of a diplomatic effort to allow Ranariddh to return to Cambodia to contest elections July 26.
But diplomats feared that an unexpected $54 million fine leveled by the judge against Ranariddh and three co defendants could become a stumbling block to the prince's return.
Pinochet ‘astonished’ by impeachment
VALPARAISO, Chile — Former dictator Augusto Pinochet said he has been “hurt and astonished by lawmakers’ attempts to dump him from his new position as senator-for-life.
He said Tuesday that he expected the effort to impeach him would fail.
Pinochet was sworn as a senator a week ago, prompting protests in several cities and reminders from his fellow senators of the massive human-rights violations committed during Pinochet’s 1973-90 dictatorship.
According to official figures, more than 3,000 people were killed for political reasons during Pinochet's rule.
Snowfall blankets Jerusalem
JERUSALEM — A heavy layer of snow coated palm trees, mosque domes and church spires today as Jerusalem, which doesn't even own a snowplow, came to a standstill.
Several inches of snow covered this city and many in northern Israel, paralyzing public transportation, closing schools and forcing cancellation of a Cabinet meeting The city’s usually bustling streets were eerily hushed as most people heeded advisories not to travel.
Lewinsky friend faces jury
WASHINGTON — As new details emerge about Kathleen Willey, Whitewater prosecutors are turning back to Monica Lewinsky in their investigation of possible obstruction of justice and perjury involving President Clinton.
A friend of Ms. Lewinsky, Catherine Allday Davis, testified nearly the entire day Tuesday before a grand jury in Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr’s criminal investigation of Clinton.
“Catherine has been a close friend of Monica’s since college and still considers herself to be a very close friend,” said her lawyer, James Bensfield.
Ms. Davis, 24, the same age as Ms. Lewinsky and a classmate at Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Ore., is the latest acquaintance of the former White House intern to be questioned by Starr’s prosecutors.
In the past two months, Starr has summoned other people who knew Ms. Lewinsky, including a friend from California, Neysa A. Erbland, 24, and White House staffer Ashley Raines. Ms. Lewinsky reportedly confided in both women about her alleged sexual relationship with the president.
A former lover of Ms. Lewin sky’s, Andy Bleiler, also has provided prosecutors with information about a relationship between Ms. Lewinsky and a man she referred to only as a high White House official.
In addition to Ms. Davis, White
White House diarist Ellen McCathran and her attorney, Jeffrey Jacobovitz leave federal court Tuesday after the staffer testified before the grand jury.
House diarist Ellen McCathran testified for about 30 minutes before the federal grand jury. Ms. McCathran organizes presidential papers for archival purposes and works in the Old Executive Office Building next to the White House.
“Monica Lewinsky did not show up on the logs,” said her lawyer, Jeffrey Jacobovitz. However, he said not every presidential meeting is recorded.
While the grand jury focused on
matters pertaining to Ms. Lewinsky, new information came out about Mrs. Willey, who has been the focus of attention since her Sunday night “60 Minutes” interview on CBS in which she said Clinton made a crude sexual advance in 1993.
A publisher said that Mrs. Willey. struggling financially since her husband’s death, was seeking a $300,000 book deal for her autobiography before she went on national television.
A kinder, gentler IRS proposed
WASHINGTON — Imagine an IRS where the workers are rewarded on how quickly and fairly they resolve your tax problems. Or a tax collection agency that’s reorganized so “any runaround burden (is) on the IRS” and not on the customer.
Those are among the 200 propos-
nal Revenue Ser- Gore vice field executives authority to issue one-day “emergency tax rebinds” in hardship cases.
And it envisions new technology to route taxpayers’ telephone calls so they’ll be answered faster and more accurately.
“We must have an IRS that is on the taxpayers’ side, providing the help they need,” said the report, obtained by The Associated Press. “We know we have a long way to go. But the good news is that the reform of the IRS has begun.”
Gore, Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin and IRS Commissioner Charles Rossotti were releasing the report at the White
House this afternoon.
The 92-page report says IRS’ existing budget can cover many improvements, but others will require new money.
Work on the report, had already begun last fall when the Senate Finance Committee conducted riveting hearings about IRS abus
es of taxpayer rights. The report was prepared as part of Gore’s “reinventing government” campaign.
The authors picked the brains of front-line IRS workers and taxpayers on how to improve service at one of the government’s least popular agencies.
House says defense funds must be matched by cuts
WASHINGTON — House Republican leaders have decided that additional spending to pay for missions in Bosnia and the Persian Gulf must be frilly paid for by cutting domestic programs.
That agreement came as a key Senate committee approved, with conditions, $1.8 billion to keep troops in Bosnia past June and to maintain U.S. troops in the Gulf on frill alert.
The Senate Appropriations Committee also endorsed, by an identical 26-2 vote, an $18 billion package for the International Monetary’ Fund. That legisla tion, which also came with conditions, is considered essential to IMF efforts to rescue the faltering economies of Asia.
In the House, GOP leaders resolved that any extra spending for Bosnia and the Gulf this year must be matched with similar spending cuts so there is no effect on the budget.
“The leadership unanimously agreed the... (spending) would be paid for, and the cuts would not come out of defense.” Majority Leader Dick Armey R-Texas, said.
Republicans, in choosing programs for spending reductions, are likely to target Democratic and White House priorities, setting the stage for sharp clashes as Congress tries to craft future budgets.
The defense bill urges President Clinton to pressure US. allies to cover more of the costs of the Iraq effort.
Mississippi Hies offer a treasure trove of innuendo
JACKSON. Miss. — After the disappearance of three civil rights workers during Mississippi’s Freedom Summer, local lawmen complained to the state’s segregationist Sovereignty Commission of being elbowed out of the investigation by FBI agents who considered them suspects.
A sheriff who is forever linked to the murders of the three young men even confided to commission investigators that he expected to be arrested.
The revelations were included in more than 132,000 previously secret files made public Tuesday under federal court order.
In its heyday, the agency’s investigators and snitches flooded the commission with every conceivable tidbit of fact and fiction on groups and individuals they considered communists or threats to white rule.
Disputed Kennedy items go on sale
NEW YORK — Lawyers for the children of John F. Kennedy made last-minute pleas to stop the sale of memorabilia that included the late president’s journals and letters to his wife.
Caroline Kennedy and John F. Kennedy Jr.
want the return of “intensely personal” items including two W-VF JI ^andwritten journals, the cor-
WB respondence and a St. Christo-
Hp J l| pher medal money clip.
|ji rn ' Their representatives were
negotiating with Maryland col MB ■■ lector Robert White, who is
AB ^H putting up most of the more
than 500 items being sold by
Kennedy Guernsey’s auction house.
Other items that were to be auctioned today included campaign trinkets, photos, party invitations, clothes, furniture and a sailboat.
In a statement Monday, the Kennedy children asked that some of the most historically and personally valuable items be returned to the family and the Kennedy Library.
Lawyer: Appeals over for ailing Ray
ARLINGTON, Va. — Convicted assassin James Earl Ray’s lawyer says his pursuit for a trial in the slaying of the Rev. Martin Luther King is effectively over because Ray is too sick to proceed, USA Today reported.
William Pepper told the paper in today’s editions that he will not appeal a Tennessee court order disqualifying a judge who had made rulings favorable to Ray. He said an appeal would tax Ray’s physical resources, with little chance of success.
Ray, 70, is in critical condition in the prison ward of a Nashville hospital, suffering from liver disease.
Boy survives toss from eighth floor
NEW YORK - Tossed from an eighth-floor bal cony by a woman police said was his grandmoth er, a 2-year-old boy suffered only a broken arm and bruises. Tree limbs broke his fall and he landed in a flower bed.
His grandmother, 55-year-old Ruby Owens, was arrested Tuesday on child assault and endangerment charges and ordered to undergo psychiatric testing, said police spokesman Joseph Pentangelo.
She was found wandering the streets of her Brooklyn neighborhood in her nightgown a halfhour after the boy was picked up.
The boy was hospitalized in stable condition.
FBI shadowed the Freemen 18 months
BILLINGS, Mont. — The FBI monitored the Freemen well before an 81-day standoff began in 1996, but agents could do little to stop the heavily armed anti government group from digging in af its “Justus Township" compound, a former agent told a federal jury.
Tommie Canady, who headed the FBI investigation, was the first witness in the trial of six men charged with helping federal fugitives avoid arrest during the standoff that ended June 13,1996.
Testimony in the trial began Tuesday. It was scheduled to resume today.
SOUTH CAROLINA Weather
Thundav, March 19
WuVVejther forecast for daytime londtiions and high temperature*
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A little sunshine
Tonight: Showers and thunderstorms are forecast. The low will be in the upper 50s.
Tomorrow: Clouds and sunshine are forecast for Thursday. The high will be in the lower 70s and the low will be in the middle 50s.
Extended: Rain returns to the area Friday. Scattered rain and thunderstorms are forecast. The high will be in the lower 70s and the low will be around 50s. Partly sunny skies are forecast for Saturday. The high will be in the middle 60s and the low will be in the lower 40s. Sunny skies and pleasantly cool temperatures are forecast for Sunday. The high Sunday will be in the lower 60s and the the low will be in the middle 30s.
Sunrise tomorrow: 6:34 a.m.
High yesterday: 51 Low yesterday: 44
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