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Nation & world in brief

Condit admits affair with missing internWASHINGTON — Rep. Gary Condit for the first time told investigators that he had a romantic relationship with Chandra Levy, a source familiar with the investigation said late Saturday.

But police reiterated that Condit is not a suspect in the disappearance of the former federal intern.

In his third interview with Washington police and FBI agents Friday night, Condit acknowledged that his relationship with Levy, 24, was more than a friendship, said the source, who discussed the meeting on grounds of not being identified by name. Condit had been less direct in describing the relationship in two earlier interviews, the source said.

Terrance Gainer, Washington’s second ranking police official, would not discuss the details of the 90-minute interview, which Condit attended with his lawyer.Defense attorney Levin found dead in cemeteryLOS ANGELES — High-profile criminal attorney Barry Levin, who helped handle Erik Menendez’s murder defense and more recently represented actor Robert Blake, was found dead Saturday of a single gunshot wound to the head at a veterans cemetery, officials said.

Levin appeared to have committed suicide, said FBI spokesman Matthew McLaughlin. The attorney was believed to have learned recently that he had an incurable disease, the spokesman said.

KFWB-AM reported that Levin was suffering from cancer and had gotten test results recently that showed the illness was worse than expected.

Levin was found slumped over the steering wheel of his vehicle about 2 p.m., McLaughlin said. The FBI was investigating because the death occurred at the Los Angeles National Cemetery, which is federal property.

Levin was one of the best-known attorneys in Los Angeles. Levin was a co-counsel for Menendez, who was sentenced to life without parole in 1996 with brother Lyle for killing their parents.Activist injures mayor in Seattle, police saySEATTLE — A man protesting a police shooting of a black man hit Mayor Paul Schell in the face with a megaphone during a community celebration Saturday afternoon, police said. The mayor suffered broken bones around his eye.

Two police officers wrestled the man to the ground, and he was arrested for investigation of felony assault, Police Chief Gil Kerlikowske said.

He identified the man as James C. Garrett, 55, who also goes by the name Omari Tahir-Garrett.

Several protests have been held in the Central District after a white officer’s fatal shooting of Aaron Roberts, a black man, on May 31.Disney World workers approve new contractORLANDO, Fla. — Walt Disney World’s hourly workers approved a contract that will raise the starting minimum wage 35 cents to $6.70 an hour over three years and raise the highest hourly wage to $18.88.

Workers who play Mickey Mouse and Cinderella, drive the buses, work in the resort’s restaurants and clean the hotel rooms voted nearly 2-to-1 for the contract on Friday.Man gored to death by buffalo in S.D. park CUSTER, S.D. — A man was gored to death by a buffalo in Custer State Park while photographing a free-roaming herd.

Ernest Barna, 76, of Allen Park, Mich., was with a group of visitors viewing the animals on Thursday when a large buffalo bull approached. All the visitors except Barna retreated to their cars, Park Superintendent Rollie Noem said.

The bull walked past, nudged Barna, then turned, gored him in the side and threw him, Noem said. Barna underwent surgery Thursday evening, but died Friday at Rapid City Regional Hospital.

world

Bolivia’s president has cancer in lung, liverLA PAZ, Bolivia — President Hugo Banzer has cancer in his left lung and liver, the government’s spokesman said Saturday, calling Banzer’s condition “grave” but saying he hadn’t yet decided whether to resign as leader of South America’s poorest nation.

The 75-year-old Banzer, who was democratically elected president four years ago after serving as dictator from 1971-78, is undergoing treatment at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington.

“Doctors have confirmed that President Banzer has cancer in his left lung and liver,” Information Minister Manfredo Kempff told journalists in a video linkup.

Kempff, speaking from Washington, said the president would make the decision on whether to step aside.

Vice President Jorge Quiroga is next in the line of presidential succession as outlined in the constitution. Quiroga serves as acting president whenever the president is out of the country.Economy will rebound, O’Neill tells G-7 sessionROME — An upbeat U.S. Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill insisted that the gloomy global economy is poised for a rebound, telling his counterparts from the world’s richest countries Saturday that people must have “some perspective” about growth.

Gathering in a Renaissance villa on a hilltop overlooking Rome, the finance ministers hammered out broad plans to revive the economy — and downplayed dismal economic data.

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“Higher is better, but this is not terrible,” O’Neill assured his colleagues at the one-day Group of Seven, or G-7, meeting. “There is some perspective required here as to where we are.”

The faltering U.S. economy should climb to growth rates above 2 percent in the fourth quarter of this year and above 3 percent next year, O’Neill predicted.Falling tree kills 11 at concert in FranceSTRASBOURG, France — Despite heavy storm warnings, no one could have predicted the tornado-like winds that sent a huge tree crashing down on spectators at a Yiddish music concert, killing 11 people, regional officials said Saturday.

Still, other outdoor concerts were canceled around France and a judicial investigation was launched to determine who might bear responsibility for the deadly accident late Friday.

Some 85 people were injured when winds of up to 93 mph suddenly ripped through the picturesque Alsace region north of Strasbourg. Fifty-two remained hospitalized Saturday evening — 17 of them in serious condition.8 Christians arrested in Laos, group saysBANGKOK, Thailand — Authorities in communist Laos have arrested eight Christians and are forcing churches across the country to close, a British human rights group said Saturday.

The Jubilee Campaign said in a statement received here that seven church leaders and one church member were arrested on May 31 in Songkhone district of central Savannakhet province because they refused to sign affidavits renouncing their religious beliefs.

The statement said the eight men were charged with anti-government activities and involvement with foreign political movements trying to weaken the government.

Three of the detainees were now too weak to walk because of poor prison conditions, it said.

Residents of the Lao capital Vientiane, contacted by telephone from Bangkok and speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed that a group of local church leaders had been arrested in Songkhone district, where a decades-old church was recently shut down.

The Southeast Asian country is predominantly Buddhist, with only a small proportion of Christians. Although it is a one-party state, Laos’s constitution provides for freedom of worship.

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