January 20, 1996
Web posted at: 9:30 p.m. EST (0230 GMT)
HAVANA, Cuba (CNN) -- U.S. Rep. Bill Richardson, D-New Mexico, told CNN his meeting Friday with Cuban President Fidel Castro was "positive" and that Castro had expressed a willingness to slash the $600 fee for Cubans migrating to the United States by half.
The existing migration fees have meant it costs up to $900, including airfare, to emigrate to the United States, a small fortune for a Cuban.
The issue has been a sticking point between Cuba and the United States in talks to review implementation of emigration accords reached in 1994 and 1995. The accords, which included an undertaking by the United States to admit some 20,000 legal Cuban emigrants a year, were aimed at halting Cuban boat people following the August 1994 rafter crisis.
Richardson emphasized that his four-day trip to Cuba was on behalf of Congress, and that he was not representing the White House.
A close friend of President Clinton, Richardson has acted as a presidential emissary on other international visits, including the successful effort to free an American Army helicopter pilot who was shot down in North Korea.
PARIS (CNN) -- Finance ministers from the Group of Seven wrapped up a one-day meeting in Paris after intense discussions on finding ways to reverse the slowdown in the global economy, particularly in Western Europe.
Delegates to the G-7, a group comprising seven of the world's richest nations, predicted that a rising dollar and falling interest rates would help perk up the economy.
Ministers indicated they discussed policies that could rejuvenate economies in the United States and Europe and enable Japan to rebound from an unusually long recession.
At the meeting, representatives also expressed some concern about the political uncertainty in Russia, particularly after last month's parliamentary elections saw communists make significant gains.
The G-7 consists of the United States, Japan, Britain, France, Italy, Canada, and Germany.
LUEBECK, Germany (CNN) -- Police said Saturday they arrested a 21-year-old Lebanese man as a suspect in the fire that killed 10 immigrants at a shelter for asylum-seekers. They said the suspect lived at the shelter.
A local newspaper said the man and two of his brothers were arrested on Friday but that the two brothers were released after questioning.
Police initially suspected right-wingers deliberately set Thursday's fire that killed six children and four adults. Three suspects -- one of them a skinhead -- were originally arrested. But they were released Friday after police said they had an alibi.
Earlier Saturday, about 3,000 demonstrators gathered in the city's main square to remember the victims of the fire.
SEOUL, South Korea (CNN) -- North Korea said Saturday that the United States is not paying enough for the remains of U.S. soldiers who died in the Korean War, and that it will dissolve an excavation team assigned to the task.
U.S. officials believe the remains of as many as 3,500 American servicemen killed in the 1950-53 war are recoverable.
Representatives from both countries met in Hawaii last week but disagreed on payments for 162 sets of U.S. remains returned in 1993-94. The U.S. says it offered more than $1 million. North Korea reportedly demanded $4 million.
KIGALI, Rwanda (CNN) -- Forensic scientists have begun digging up a mass grave to provide evidence for a U.N. tribunal investigating the 1994 genocide of a million Tutsis and moderate Hutus.
The exhumations are in the western town of Kibuye. As many as 12,000 Tutsis -- almost the entire Tutsi population of the town -- are believed to have been hacked to death in April 1994.
The searchers hope to match evidence with witness accounts of the genocide. The tribunal, seated in Tanzania, indicted eight Rwandans on genocide charges in December for the killings in Kibuye.
Hundreds of bodies were dumped in the mass grave near a church, where militias hacked their victims to death with machetes and hunted down fleeing Tutsis with grenades after throwing burning tires into the church to force people out.
SINGAPORE (CNN) -- Singapore's elder statesman, Lee Kuan Yew, 72, underwent successful hospital treatment on Saturday to open up a narrowed coronary artery.
Lee, who governed Singapore from 1959 to 1990, was admitted to a hospital for observation and tests on Friday night after he complained of chest pains.
A coronary angiographic examination showed significant narrowing of one coronary artery at two different sites. Both areas of narrowing were successfully opened up with balloon angioplasty, the government said.
Lee, who is Senior Minister in the Singaporean government, led Singapore for more than three decades until he formally stepped down in 1990. He remains one of the most powerful political figures in the country.
KARACHI, Pakistan (CNN) -- Police shot dead five Mohajir National Movement (MQM) activists in Karachi on Saturday.
The MQM has called for a strike on Sunday in Sindh province, of which Karachi is the capital, to protest what it says is a pattern of torture and extra-judicial killings of its party workers by security forces.
The government denies that the security forces, which have been engaged in a long-running conflict with MQM militants, torture or kill their opponents in cold blood.
More than 70 people have been killed in Karachi this month and more than 1,950 died in ethnic, sectarian and political violence. The MQM is seeking greater rights for Karachi's majority Mohajirs -- Urdu-speaking Muslims who fled to Pakistan from India at Partition in 1947 -- and their descendants.
CAIRO, Egypt (CNN) -- Mohammed Hamed Abul Nasr, the leader of Egypt's largest and most powerful Islamic fundamentalist group for more than a decade, died of natural causes Saturday at age 83.
Abul Nasr led the Brotherhood since 1986. Under his leadership, the group became increasingly influential by funding social services and taking part in elections.
He was considered a moderate Islamic activist who supported the imposition of Islamic law but suggested it could be implemented gradually. He insisted on a policy of non- violence and worked to avoid confrontations with the state.
The Brotherhood, which is technically outlawed, has been largely tolerated by the government since the 1970s. But since last year, the government -- possibly fearful of its growing influence -- jailed its most dynamic leaders and closed its headquarters in a campaign that sought to link it to militants who have fought a four-year insurgency in southern Egypt.
NEW DELHI, India (CNN) -- Guerrillas in northeast India killed six people and wounded 11 on Saturday when they ambushed health workers involved in a mass campaign to immunize children against polio.
The Press Trust of India (PTI) said five paramilitary troopers and one civilian died when militants in Tripura state opened fire on a convoy carrying workers to an immunization center.
The violence marred a massive campaign to eradicate the crippling disease. About two million health workers vaccinated tens of millions of children across India, giving two drops of oral polio vaccine to every child under the age of four.
On the first of two vaccination days last month, 87.8 million children across India received drops. The World Health Organization said that was the largest public health event in a single day in the history of any country.
India accounted for 4,791 of 7,435 cases of polio worldwide in 1994. Health officials hope to eradicate the disease worldwide by the turn of the century.
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