MIDDLE EAST DEVELOPMENTS Nearly 330 Westerners held hostage for four months arrived yesterday in Frankfurt, Germany, from Baghdad, and a plane carrying more than 200 freed hostages landed in Rome.... Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir rejected any participation in an international conference on the Palestinian issue. He also said he would respond immediately to any aggression against his country by Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein.... In Jerusalem, the Palestinian revolt against Israeli military rule in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip started its fourth year with bloodshed on both sides: A roadside bomb killed an Israeli soldier Sunday, and Israeli border police shot an Arab civilian.... Two more US soldiers were killed in weekend accidents in Saudi Arabia, raising to 53 the number of Americans who have died in Operation Desert Shield.
UNITED STATES AND CANADA
A natural gas explosion and fire ripped through an Army housing complex at Fort Benjamin Harrison in Indianapolis Sunday night, critically injuring seven people and leaving a 5-year-old girl missing.... New York City's private sanitation workers went on strike yesterday, rejecting a new contract offered by about 250,000 city businesses.... Canada's new Liberal party chief, Jean Chretien, was poised to win yesterday's election to a vacant seat in New Brunswick's Beausejour district. With the ruling Conservatives of Prime Minister Brian Mulroney deeply unpopular and a general election due by 1993 at the latest, pundits say Chretien could become the next prime minister.
In Poland, Solidarity leader Lech Walesa Sunday scored a landslide victory over outsider Stanislaw Tyminski in the country's first democratic presidential election.... In Yugoslavia, Serbian opposition leaders lodged protests alleging irregularities in the first free election in 50 years in the country's biggest republic. Serbia's Communist President Slobodan Milosevic is widely expected to win reelection over the anticommunist Vuk Draskovic, but the Communists could lose control of the 250-seat parliament.... Communists in the Baltic republic of Lithuania changed their party's name Sunday to the Lithuanian Democratic Labor Party. AFRICA
The United Nations yesterday appealed for up to 1.3 million tons of food aid for Sudan in 1991. According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, widespread crop failure has come on the heels of two consecutive years of drought, and about 5 million people face starvation.... In South Africa, both the Pan Africanist Congress (PAC) and the Azanian People's Organization have rejected President Frederik de Klerk's invitation for talks on the country's future. The PAC said it would only take part in talks if Mr. de Klerk agreed to the election of a constituent assembly, something he refuses.