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YUGOSLAV TALKS GRIND TO A HALT Five nations proposing a peace plan for Bosnia-Herzegovina refuse to bargain with Bosnian Serbs over its centerpiece, the map for dividing the country, French and German officials said Aug. 2. Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev, back from talks in Belgrade, told Russian television Aug. 1 that he has ruled out further talks with Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic. The United States, Russia, Germany, France, and Britain, the members of the so-called contact group, drew up the plan and said July 30 they would accept only amendments agreed to by the Bosnian Serbs and the rival Muslim-Croat federation. (See story, Page 2.) Argentina signs on

Argentina became the first country Aug. 1 to volunteer for a possible US-led invasion of Haiti. Argentine President Carlos Saul Menem told a Buenos Aires radio station he will ask Congress for authorization to contribute about 600 soldiers. Gore in Ukraine

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US Vice President Al Gore Jr. held talks Aug. 2 with Ukraine's new prime minister, Leonid Kuchma, and parliamentary leaders, who favor closer ties to Russia, and pledged US support in reforming the country's moribund economy. The vice president's stopover, after a two-day visit to Poland, is the latest sign of Western interest in keeping Ukraine moving toward market reforms and nuclear disarmament. N. Korea says reactor key

North Korea said Aug. 2 it will insist on a new nuclear reactor during talks with the United States as part of the price for opening its nuclear program to inspectors. The Communist North said it will present the request for the new light-water reactor when the negotiations resume in Geneva Aug. 5. Herzog speech in Poland

German President Roman Herzog won widespread praise Aug. 2 for his apology to Poland for the suffering his country inflicted on it during World War II. Many commentators compared his speech on the 50th anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising to the visit to Warsaw in 1970 of former West German Chancellor Willy Brandt, who dropped to his knees in atonement for Nazi war crimes. N.C. districts ruled legal

Even though two oddly shaped North Carolina congressional districts were drawn to ensure that blacks are elected, they are legal because their aim is to correct past injustices, a panel of federal judges ruled. The panel ruled 2 to 1 Aug. 1 against a lawsuit by five white voters claiming the redistricting plan was unconstitutional. Fire battles continue

Across eight Western states, more than 14,000 civilian firefighters were battling 26 major fires Aug. 2. Nearly 2 million acres have been burned this year, more than in all of 1993, according to the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise, Idaho. A battalion of 550 Marines from Camp Pendleton, Calif., jumped into the fray Aug. 2 after eight hours of training.

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