News In Brief
Spanish student leaders signed a deal with the government yesterday on a broad range of education reforms expected to end 2 months of high school unrest. Spanish Education Minister Jos'e Mar'ia Maravall presented a $312 million plan Tuesday that will overhaul college entrance exams, increase school operating budgets by 50 percent, provide more scholarships, and freeze tuition costs.
Philippine task force to trace Marcos wealth
The Philippines named a high-level task force yesterday to renew efforts to recover billions of dollars believed removed from the country by former President Marcos and his associates. The Cabinet appointed Vice-President Salvador Laurel to head the group, which will trace more than $10 billion in assets the goverment alleges was secreted abroad by Mr. Marcos and about 40 others.
Inquiry at military college shows good race relations
A three-month internal investigation at The Citadel concluded that the military college has a good record on race relations, although the climate can be improved, according to a report released yesterday. ``The most pervasive concern is best summarized under the heading of `insensitivity,''' the report said. ``This encompasses a number of behaviors including cadets' telling of racial or religious jokes or making comments which are in poor taste.'' The inquiry was ordered by the college's president after the hazing of a black cadet which attracted nationwide publicity last October.
Shcharansky to join protest to free dissident
A relative of imprisoned Soviet dissident Iosif Begun said Wednesday that freed activist Natan Shcharansky and his family will join a two-day protest in New York today against Mr. Begun's continued imprisonment. The Shcharanskys and others plan to live for two days in a ``prison cage'' near the Soviet mission to the United Nations to express their outrage at Begun's treatment. Begun, a Hebrew teacher, remains in prison in the Soviet Union despite reports that he would be freed.
Bar group backs limits on personal-injury awards
The American Bar Association has voted to lobby against legislative efforts to impose ceilings on the money awarded for pain and suffering in personal-injury suits. Acting on a series of other proposed changes in the handling of injury cases, the delegates voted Tuesday to make punitive damages more difficult to collect. The leaders of the 330,000-lawyer group also endorsed altering the tradition of allowing victims of accidents caused by the negligence of more than one defendant to collect fully from any one of the defendants.
Three lawyers convicted in Greylord investigation
A jury has found three lawyers guilty of bribing Cook County Circuit Court officials in a trial stemming from the federal Operation Greylord investigation. Attorneys Harlan Becker, Robert Daniels, and Harry Jaffe were convicted of paying bribes to have cases steered their way and were found guilty of racketeering and mail fraud. They were indicted in the continuing federal probe of corruption in the Cook County court system.
8 linked to Marxist group released after detention
An immigration judge ruled Tuesday that seven Jordanians and a Kenyan accused of affiliation with a Marxist Palestinian group could no longer be held without bail and he refused to hear secret government testimony about their danger to society. The judge released five of the defendants on their own recognizance and set bail for three others. All eight had been held without bond since they were arrested Jan. 26, accused of being affliated with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. A deportation hearing was postponed to April 28.
First woman named as US Cabinet secretary
President Reagan will appoint Nancy Risque, a former White House official now working for a Washington political consulting firm, as Cabinet secretary, the White House announced yesterday. A spokesman said Ms. Risque will be the first woman to hold the position, which carries the rank of assistant to the President.
16 LaRouche followers facing fraud charges
A state grand jury has indicted 16 followers of political extremist Lyndon LaRouche on felony securities fraud and other charges. A state prosecutor said the charges stemmed from the sale of notes and other securities on behalf of LaRouche-related organizations and involved a portion of $30 million in allegedly fraudulent solicitations over several years. Authorities have arrested 14 of the LaRouche followers.
Heavy rate of cocaine use reported in N.Y. arrests
Nearly 78 percent of all people arrested in New York City for serious crimes from September through November tested positive for cocaine use, a rate that has almost doubled since 1984, a Justice Department research agency reported yesterday. An increase in cocaine use was found among all age levels, but was especially large among those 16 to 20 years old. The survey also found that almost 40 percent of the cocaine users first tried the drug before age 18.
Iran-contra update. Senate panel clouds contra aid
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted narrowly yesterday to halt aid to the Nicaraguan contras in the first major test of sentiment toward the rebels in the 100th Congress. The vote sends to the Senate floor a bill that would cut off aid to the contras, while providing a package of $300 million worth of new aid to other Central American nations, including Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Costa Rica.
Elsewhere on Capitol Hill, confirmation hearings continued for Robert Gates, President Reagan's nominee for director of the CIA. Mr. Gates came under renewed fire as Sen. Arlen Specter (R) of Pennsylvania accused him of trying to evade responsibility for misleading testimony that was presented to the Senate Intelligence Committee by former CIA Director Casey last year.
Senator Specter said Mr. Casey's testimony about the Iran-contra affair on Nov. 21 had been ``skimpy, scanty, uninformative, and really misleading,'' and noted that Gates had directed preparation of the statement. Gates defended his action, saying the testimony prepared for Casey was ``a fair statement of what we knew at the time.''
In response to other questions, Gates attempted to quiet concerns he raised on Tuesday during his first day of hearings when he said the Iran deal was primarily a diplomatic initiative carried out by the National Security Council.
At the White House, Mr. Reagan met with Israeli Prime Minister Shamir. Both declined to answer reporters' questions about Iranian arms deal and prospects for a Mideast peace conference.
Mr. Shamir had separate sessions set for late afternoon with congressional leaders. The Senate and House select committees investigating the Iran-contra affair were to give the prime minister an informal briefing on the status of their inquiries.