Archive for Saturday, August 2, 2003


August 2, 2003


Washington, D.C.

U.S. says bilateral talks with North Korea possible

The Bush administration said Friday that one-on-one talks with North Korea, long resisted by the White House, were possible as part of a proposed six-nation discussion of North Korea's nuclear weapons ambitions.

President Bush said he hoped the talks, which will feature a coalition of countries opposed to North Korea's nuclear designs, would help persuade the reclusive communist state to dismantle its programs in a way that can be verified.

"In the past it was the lone voice of the United States speaking clearly about this. Now we'll have other parties who have got a vested interest in peace on the Korean peninsula," Bush said.

No date has been set for the talks, which are expected to occur in China.

Los Angeles

Former L.A. mayor likely to join governor's race

Former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan appears increasingly likely to run for governor in the Oct. 7 recall election, a prospect that is pressuring Democrats already straining to maintain unity behind Gov. Gray Davis.

Riordan, a popular moderate Republican, is assembling a campaign team and said he would seriously consider getting in the race if actor Arnold Schwarzenegger does not.

Schwarzenegger's political advisers said he was leaning against running and would make an announcement Wednesday. He will then appear on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" to discuss it.

Potential candidates have until Aug. 9 to file to run. If voters oust Davis in the recall election, the alternative with the most votes will become governor.


Wildlife blamed for cat deaths

Colorado authorities Friday blamed 45 Denver-area cat slayings in the past year on wildlife, ending weeks of suspicion that budding psychopaths were killing the pets.

Utah authorities came to a similar conclusion earlier this week in the deaths of nearly a dozen cats in the Salt Lake City area.

"All of the deaths were caused by predators," police Chief Ricky Bennett said in suburban Aurora, where 29 cases were reported.

Animal control officers had said some of the cats were sliced with surgical precision. Wildlife experts later used microscopes on the dead cats and found that what appeared to be clean cuts by a scalpel were actually rips in the skin.


Student accused of hacking

A graduate student is accused of hacking into the University of Michigan's computer system and using information from more than 60 students and professors to forge e-mails and get copies of final exams.

In one case, Ning Ma, 24, is accused of sending an e-mail from a professor's account to a female student, telling her that she was failing. Ning then offered to tutor the woman in hopes of obtaining sexual favors in return, the attorney general's office said. The student rebuffed Ning's attempts.

Ning was arraigned Friday in Ann Arbor and was being held on $100,000 bail.

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