The World

The Iraqi Governing Council, 25 men and women including religious and tribal leaders, teachers and individuals imprisoned by the regime of Saddam Hussein, met for the first time as a group that will work with U.S.-led occupation forces to govern Iraq.

Two Arab stations broadcast a tape with a voice on it purporting to be that of Saddam Hussein urging Iraqis to rise up against the American occupation and Iraqis cooperating with it.

North Korea informed the United States that it had enough plutonium to make six nuclear weapons and that it intended to do so.

India joined France and Germany in refusing to send troops to join a peacekeeping force in Iraq, saying they would not do so without an explicit U.N. mandate.

Two top officials in the Hong Kong government resigned in the face of continuing unrest over restrictions proposed by the Chinese government.

In Sao Tome and Principe, a potentially oil-rich state in Western Africa, armed soldiers took over the government from President Fradique de Menezes.

The Nation

The U.S. budget deficit for next year could reach $475 billion, White House officials acknowledged, and that does not include the costs of the occupation of Iraq and operations in Afghanistan. The calculation followed an estimate that this year's deficit would be $455 billion, a record.

Kobe Bryant was charged with sexually assaulting a 19-year-old Colorado woman. The pro basketball star denied the accusation, saying he was guilty only of adultery.

The New York Times named Bill Keller, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, to its top newsroom post of executive editor, the job from which Howell Raines resigned last month after the scandal over a Times reporter who fabricated information in scores of articles.

Edison Schools, the largest for-profit manager of public schools in America, will be turned into a private company by its founder, H. Christopher Whittle, and his partners for about $174 million. Edison manages three schools in Baltimore.

Sea Island, a posh island resort community on the Georgia coast, was selected by President Bush as the site for next year's meeting of the Group of Eight, the world's seven leading industrialized countries and Russia.

Croatia's education ministry canceled plans to introduce yoga classes for the country's schoolteachers. The Roman Catholic Church had objected, fearing that yoga would lead to Hinduism.

A U.S. Appeals Court in the District of Columbia rejected all but $85,000 of a claim by former President Bill Clinton that the government should pay $3.5 million of his and Sen. Hilary Rodham Clinton's legal fees arising from the Whitewater investigation, which lasted more than seven years and cost the government $70 million.

An 86-year-old man drove his car the length of the farmers' market in Santa Monica, Calif., apparently reaching freeway speeds as he plowed through terrified shoppers, killing at least 10 people, including a 3-year-old girl.

The Region

West Nile disease was found in mosquitoes trapped in Anne Arundel County, the first appearance this year of the disease that killed seven Maryland residents last year.

Casper R. Taylor, former speaker of the House of Delegates, has joined the team of lobbyists representing embattled CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, the nonprofit health care group.

Aloma's Ruler, the Maryland horse that won the Preakness in 1982, died at the age of 24.

Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. named two new members to the state's racing commission: Thomas F. McDonough, a Towson lawyer, and Alvin Akman, a longtime racehorse owner whose brother-in-law is Melvin A. Steinberg, a former Democratic lieutenant governor who supported Ehrlich's campaign.

Maryland's tax revenues for the past three months fell $76 million below predictions.

After a chase of about 200 miles through four counties, police arrested a man accused of trying to run down a police officer in Baltimore and later carjacking a sport utility vehicle with two children strapped into car seats.

Leslie R. Doggett, a senior tourism official in the Clinton administration and an industry veteran, has been appointed chief of Baltimore's beleaguered convention bureau, city officials said.

Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, refused to meet with President Bush and other members of the House of Representatives to discuss the president's recent trip to Africa. Cummings said he was reacting to the president's refusal over the past 2 1/2 years to meet with the caucus.

Johns Hopkins Hospital was named for the 13th year in a row as the best of the nation's hospitals in a survey by U.S. News and World Report.


"I had six months of absolute silence and love and joy and now I'll get to be my usual self."

William Donald Schaefer, comptroller and former governor, declaring the end of his post-inaugural moratorium on grousing against the governor

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