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South Africa will allow the Soviet Union to decode a flight recorder from the crashed plane in which Mozambique President Samora Machel was killed last month, Foreign Minister Roelof Botha said yesterday. Mr. Botha said South Africa will decode a duplicate ``black box.'' A third set of information, the voice recordings of the flight, will be taken to a neutral country for decoding and analysis. The Mozambican-registered, Soviet-built jet crashed just inside South African territory Oct. 19.

High court hears merits of two hiring-bias cases

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The US Supreme Court heard arguments yesterday in two affirmative-action cases involving women and minorities. In the case of a court-ordered plan for promoting equal numbers of black and white state troopers in Alabama, representatives of the Reagan administration urged the court to limit affirmative-action plans which give preferential treatment in promotions to women and minorities.

The justices also heard arguments in a second case involving the promotion of a woman instead of an allegedly more qualified man by a county road agency in California.

Officials of Indian party bow out for Gandhi shift

The executive president and other top leadership of India's ruling Congress (I) Party bowed to the wishes of Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and resigned yesterday, paving the way for a reorganization of the group, government-run All-India Radio reported yesterday. Party president Kamlapati Tripathi had resisted nearly three weeks of pressure from the prime minister. Mr. Gandhi has made reorganization of the party a top priority in order to bring in younger leaders and rebuild grass-roots support.

US Catholic bishops side with Vatican on discipline

America's Roman Catholic bishops sided with church officials in Rome yesterday, saying the Vatican's disciplining of American Archbishop Donald Hunthausen deserves ``respect and confidence.'' The Vatican had ordered the Seattle archbishop to turn over much of his authority to an auxiliary bishop, saying it considered Archbishop Hunthausen too liberal on issues such as homosexuality and divorce.

NYC police slow work over officer rotation plan

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City police officers upset over new anticorruption measures were writing far fewer parking tickets and traffic citations but continuing to respond to serious crimes, department figures showed this week. Mayor Edward Koch defended the anticorruption proposals, which include the rotation of all police officers among the city's precincts every five years. The measures followed charges of corruption against 12 current and former officers of Brooklyn's 77th Precinct. The officers were arraigned last week.

OAS criticizes Britain for Falklands fishing zone

The Organization of American States passed a resolution criticizing Britain for its declaration of a 150-mile fisheries conservation zone around the Falkland Islands. The resolution was approved Tuesday by all 31 OAS foreign ministers, including US Secretary of State George Shultz. The action fell short of an outright condemnation of Britain, but it gives Argentina new ammunition in its efforts to muster international support against the Oct. 29 British declaration.

Crowded ferry sinks near Haitian capital

An overcrowded ferry sailing to the Haitian island of La Gonave capsized and sank in rough seas, radio reports said yesterday. At least 180 people were killed; authorities said 20 were rescued. A Haitian radio station quoted the mayor of La Gonave as saying the ferry was making the 44-mile return trip Tuesday night to the island from the mainland town of Montrouis when a huge wave engulfed the boat about two miles from shore and flipped it in the opposite direction.

US, Soviet grain harvests eclipse earlier forecasts

Harvests in the United States and the Soviet Union this fall are better than expected - bad news for US grain farmers hurt by low prices and sagging exports. This week the Agriculture Department dramatically revised its estimate of this year's Soviet grain crop, citing improvements in productivity and more favorable weather conditions. The department's report estimated the Soviet crop at 195 million metric tons, 15 million tons more than it had estimated a month ago. This year's Soviet harvest is expected to be the best in at least five years.

In the US, farmers are getting record yields from this fall's corn harvest, despite problems with wet fields in parts of the Corn Belt, the department said. Based on surveys made Nov. 1, the crop is estimated at 8.22 billion bushels.


In the Nov. 4 election, US Rep.-elect Louise Slaughter (D) defeated freshman Republican Congressman Fred J. Eckert in New York's 30th District, rather than winning a contest for a vacated seat as indicated in a Nov. 6 Monitor report.

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