BORDEAUX - A French court freed an American fugitive convicted of killing his girlfriend in 1977 and scheduled a December hearing on a U.S. extradition request. A judge ruled that Ira Einhorn must report to his local police station once a week before the Dec. 1 hearing.

Sri Lanka

COLOMBO - A plane carrying 55 people disappeared after taking off from Sri Lanka's troubled Jaffna peninsula en route to the capital, aviation officials said.


BLACKPOOL - Prime Minister Tony Blair told his Labor Party that he will stick to an anti-inflationary economic policy, despite accusations that he has become conservative and authoritarian.


VIENNA - The government set up an independent commission to investigate the claims of Austrian victims of the Nazi Holocaust.


MOSCOW - Russia's strategic missile forces launched a Kosmos class military satellite from a remote northern base.


ATHENS - For the first time in 13 years, Greece and Turkey will jointly take part in a NATO exercise. The annual "Dynamic Mix" is a 21-day air, land and sea exercise.

South Korea

SEOUL - Unionized employees called off a strike at the nation's nine major banks after reaching a deal with management on the size and terms of layoffs.

British Columbia

VICTORIA - Canadian fishery officials plan to prevent members of Washington state's Makah band from conducting their whale hunt in Canadian waters.


MIDDELBURG - A small oil painting, "The Tree," by abstract pioneer Piet Mondrian has been stolen from the Zeeuws Museum in this southwestern Dutch city.


LUSAKA - Former President Kenneth Kaunda said his cash-strapped party would sell some assets to hold a national council meeting at which he will formally retire from active politics.


PHNOM PENH - Top officials from feuding political parties held their first formal talks since the July 26 election, agreeing on an opposition demand that all ballots from the vote should be accounted for.


PONTIANAK - Soldiers and police, long rivals in this city in the Indonesian part of Borneo island, opened fire on each other, killing at least three people, police and witnesses said.


BEIRUT - Some 200 Lebanese staged a protest outside the Turkish embassy to protest against the growing alliance between Israel and Turkey.


KUALA LUMPUR - Lim Kit Siang, head of the opposition Democratic Action Party, called on Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad to answer his former deputy's accusation that he was badly beaten by police while under arrest.


BEIJING - A court issued a death sentence and jail terms to a company manager and top police officials who ran a car smuggling ring in eastern China, state media said.


NAIROBI - Conservationist Richard Leakey plans to resign as an opposition member of parliament after being reappointed as director of the Kenya Wildlife Service, his Safina party said.