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FORD, UAW SIGN NEW CONTRACT Ford Motor Co. and the United Auto Workers union reached an agreement on a new labor contract Wednesday that offers higher wages and pension benefits for current workers but lowers the salary for newly hired employees. UAW president Owen Bieber said the agreement, which covers 96,000 hourly workers in the United States, will last for three years. Local union officials said the pact contains many of the same provisions as the previous agreement. Somalia deaths

Somali gunmen shot to death two Italian soldiers jogging in Mogadishu Wednesday and fired four mortar bombs into the United Nations compound, injuring 11 staff members. The violence flared just as Rome's peacekeeping contingent was withdrawing from the capital after a disagreement over UN policy in Somalia.

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Gun battles between the feuding clan of warlord Mohamed Farah Aideed and followers of his bitter rival, self-styled President Mohamed Ali Mahdi, also killed a child and pushed the capital back toward the anarchy the 27,000-strong UN army was supposed to end when the US troops landed in December last year. E. Germans sentenced

A Berlin court sentenced former East German Defense Minister Heinz Kessler to 7 1/2 years in jail yesterday for the deaths of people shot trying to flee to the West over the Berlin Wall and inter-German border.

Two other former officials were given shorter sentences: Mr. Kessler's top aide received a 5 1/2-year sentence, and the local Communist Party boss received a 4 1/2 year sentence. More than 500 people were killed before the Wall fell.

The case was started against former East German leader Erich Honecker whom prosecutors say issued the shoot-to-kill orders his security chief Erich Mielke, and Prime Minister Willi Stoph. All were excused from the trial because of poor health. Cocaine program faulted

The Clinton administration has concluded that the Pentagon's cocaine smuggling interdiction program is largely a failure, according to a published report.

The National Security Council is recommending a ``controlled shift'' toward destroying cocaine labs in South America and disrupting trafficking operations rather than concentrating on intercepting drugs at sea as they near US coasts, the Washington Post said yesterday.

However, the Senate Appropriations Committee voted this week to cut foreign antidrug programs, including a $47 million cut for the State Department office that supports raids on cocaine operations in Peru, Bolivia, and Guatemala. Cuba opens economy

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Cuba took another step into market economics Wednesday, saying it will set up cooperatives on state land and let farmers share the profits.

Cuba's Catholic bishops, meanwhile, came forth with their boldest criticism of Fidel Castro in decades and challenged the government to make political as well as economic reforms.

The cooperatives, announced on the front page of the Communist Party daily Granma, are the latest in a series of retreats from pure socialism. Discovery crew spacewalks

Two Discovery astronauts ventured into the shuttle's open cargo bay yesterday on the third US spacewalk in less than a year. Carl Walz and Jim Newman planned to test techniques and some two dozen tools for another shuttle crew that will be dispatched in December to repair the Hubble Space Telescope. Khmer Rouge sidelined

The Cambodian government will give the Khmer Rouge until October to turn over its territory before forcing the guerrilla group to comply with the country's new constitution, one of the nation's new leaders said yesterday.

Prince Norodom Rannaridh said the constitution, which is to be adopted within the next few days so the new administration can take control, outlaws the Khmer Rouge's current control over 20 percent of the country.

Prince Rannaridh, co-chairman of the interim administration and set to become the country's next premier, said he would raise the issue with the Khmer Rouge at peace talks scheduled for October.

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