Around the world
N-TALKS HELD: The five declared nuclear powers negotiated for several hours in Geneva, Switzerland, Saturday and will meet again Sunday to try to narrow differences on a nuclear test ban treaty due to be concluded in less than one week, diplomats said. Earlier, Sha Zukang, China's ambassador to the Conference on Disarmament, said the talks would focus on the sensitive issue of on-site inspections to be carried out in case of cheating. The five declared nuclear powers - Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States - met privately for more than two hours at the U.S. diplomatic mission in Geneva. The major powers are seeking consensus on several key points holding up a comprehensive test ban treaty.4 GERMANS HAILED: Pope John Paul II praised on Saturday four Germans who had opposed Hitler, including a Jewish convert who died at Auschwitz, during an outdoor Mass that set the stage for beatification ceremonies on Sunday. The three priests and one nun were a "sign of the resistance to the demonical forces in a world remote from God," he told about 70,000 people gathered under colorful umbrellas at an airstrip on the damp summer morning in Paderborn, Germany.
TALKS STALLED: Military negotiators said their talks to end the Chechen war were at a standstill Saturday, and fighting in the capital claimed more lives despite a cease-fire. Since Friday, attacks in Grozny have killed five Russian soldiers and four Chechens, the Russian military said. Both sides have signed peace agreements in recent weeks, and negotiations Saturday in the Grozny suburb of Khankala were meant to clear up problems remaining in a June 10 military agreement to wind down the 18-month war in the separatist republic. But two hours of talks brought no progress Saturday, negotiators said.
Across the nation
VICTIM IDENTIFIED: An ankle tattoo of the Nike "swoosh" symbol helped authorities identify the bludgeoned, naked body of a woman found in a junky Philadelphia lot as that of a star college lacrosse player. Aimee Willard, 22, who attended George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., was last seen alive Thursday morning as she left a suburban bar where she had gone with friends. Investigators had no suspects late Friday but were investigating whether she was sexually assaulted.
3 GUILTY OF MURDER: Three men have been convicted and sentenced to die in the murder of a Peace Corps volunteer from Nashua, N.H.,who was living in a mud hut in a village in Madagascar. A Madagascar court sentenced the men on Thursday to death by firing squad for the April 9 death of Nancy Coutu, the Peace Corps said. Coutu, 29, was attacked while riding her bicycle outside Bereketa, the village where she had lived for 18 months. She died from a blow to the head. "Death by firing squad is quite acceptable in this case," said Roger Coutu, Nancy's father, from Nashua.