News from around the world
U.N. officials, angered by disruptions of their relief efforts, said Monday they will send armored vehicles to escort food convoys to two of the most food-starved cities in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Fighting at Sarajevo's airport forced U.N. officials to suspend operations Monday afternoon and cancel the day's last two relief flights.
Farmers burned hay and gave away white wine Monday to underline their demand that France scuttle the U.S.-European Community accord that cuts exports of subsidized European crops. Huge nationwide demonstrations were planned for Wednesday, when the National Assembly debates last week's accord, designed to avert a trans-Atlantic trade war. About 300 farmers surrounded a Coca-Cola plant in Grigny, south of Paris, in a symbolic protest against the United States. In Paris, vandals covered with graffiti the home of former Agriculture Minister Louis Mermaz.
In Orleans, south of Paris, farmers burned tires in front of a McDonald's restaurant and passed out free white wine to mock the U.S. threat to impose $300 million in penalty duties on European products, mostly white wine. The penalties, which would start next month, would hurt France more than other nations involved in the accord. The U.S.-EC agreement would resolve the final disputes between Washington and the 12-nation European Community and pave the way for a long-delayed global trade agreement under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, or GATT. EC foreign ministers must approve the accord.
Two senior American senators said Monday they received new assurances that Ukraine would surrender its nuclear arms, both to improve its own security and to attract Western aid and investment. Sens. Sam Nunn (D-Ga.) and Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) also said they urged President Bush and President-elect Clinton to cooperate on arms and economic issues involving Russia and former Soviet republics.
A report from the United Nations obtained Monday said Iran makes excessive use of the death penalty and said nearly a third of those executed earlier this year were convicted of political crimes. Baha'is have particularly been targeted for persecution in Muslim Iran, said a report by a U.N. human rights investigator. He found that torture is often used illegally to force false confessions from the accused and that legal procedures may be unfair and summary.
Iraqi officials insisted Monday that Iraq had complied with the terms of the Persian Gulf War cease-fire and asked that painful economic sanctions be lifted, but the Security Council rebuffed the appeal. Deputy Prime Minister Tariq Aziz also accused the Security Council of genocide against the Iraqi people. But council members, even before Aziz's appeal, agreed that Iraq has not complied with the terms of the cease-fire that ended the Persian Gulf War.
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