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Archive for Sunday, May 12, 2002

National Briefs

May 12, 2002

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Washington: Nuclear test reports prompt action by House

The House has approved legislation calling for exchange visits between the U.S. nuclear test site in Nevada and Russia's test site on an Arctic archipelago. The move is an effort to promote openness in the face of reported signs Russia may be preparing to resume nuclear testing.

Rep. Curt Weldon, R-Pa., who sponsored the amendment, told the House last week that a classified intelligence briefing for certain members of Congress had included information on possible "new movement in the area of nuclear weapons and nuclear materials."

The new questions about Russia's nuclear testing come just weeks before President Bush is to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin for a May 23-26 summit in Russia. Arms control is on the agenda.

Russia has observed a moratorium on full-scale nuclear testing since October 1990.

Honolulu: Hawaii to post shark warning signs

Prompted by two shark attacks in the past 19 months at a popular Maui snorkeling spot, Hawaii will post its first permanent shark warning signs, officials said.

Olowalu Beach in west Maui will have about seven signs placed in the area to warn visitors about possible shark-inhabited waters.

"It has a local reputation that goes back a long way as a place that has lots of sharks," said Randy Honebrink of the state Shark Task Force. "People who live on Maui are aware of that. But people who come from other places are not."

Hawaii averages about three shark attacks per year. The latest one was on Kauai in March.

New York: Governor kicks off re-election campaign

Gov. George Pataki, riding a post-Sept. 11 political high, officially began his quest for a third term on Saturday in Peekskill.

The formal announcement made official what had been obvious for months as the Republican governor campaigned, collected endorsements and drummed up contributions.

Pataki said the state was facing a changed world in the wake of the terrorist attacks that brought down the World Trade Center towers.

"We will meet these uncertain challenges in no uncertain terms," he said.

Democrats Andrew Cuomo, the elder son of former Gov. Mario Cuomo, and state Comptroller H. Carl McCall will square off in a Sept. 10 primary.

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