King says he has board’s support
ATLANTA — Martin Luther King III said yesterday he has the support of most of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference board, even though the board chairman last month criticized his leadership of the civil rights organization founded by his father.
“I’m very disappointed that our chairman chose to air the issues of internal SCLC workings before the nation,” Mr. King said at a news conference.
SCLC Board Chairman Claud Young had told Mr. King he would lose his job as president unless he improved his performance. Mr. Young implied in an interview on Wednesday that Mr. King’s job was no longer in danger.
Critics complain that Mr. King is too often absent and has not fulfilled hopes that he would restore the SCLC to its civil rights-era prominence.
King supporters say SCLC board members, many of whom are comfortable, middle-class blacks, have allowed the organization to atrophy.
Town revises anti-U.N. ordinance
LA VERKIN, Utah — While blaming the United Nations for environmentalism and other perceived dangers, city council members toned down their anti-U.N. ordinance to avoid being sued.
The changes were made after state Attorney General Mark Shurtleff advised council members that their original law, adopted in a special session on July 4, violated residents’ constitutional rights of speech, assembly and equal protection.
The ordinance no longer requires residents and businesses working for the United Nations or its supporters to post signs on their property and file reports with the city.
Rumsfeld disavows base closings remarks
Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld disavowed a top defense official’s remarks targeting certain areas for base closures, saying he was wrong to have made the comments and it wouldn’t happen again, Sen. John W. Warner, Virginia Republican, said yesterday.
Raymond DuBois, deputy undersecretary of defense for installations and environment, said in USA Today on Wednesday that some operations could be transferred out of the Southeast, where an increase in civilian aircraft and suburban sprawl were becoming a hindrance. He also said some of the 150 military operations in the Norfolk area probably would be eliminated.
Mr. Rumsfeld told several senators gathered at Senate Minority Leader Trent Lott’s Capitol office that the statements were incorrect. The Mississippi Republican had invited Mr. Rumsfeld to meet in his Capitol office on Wednesday with the lawmakers before the article was published.
Mr. Warner wrote to Mr. Rumsfeld before the meeting that he was dumbfounded by the comments, saying the criteria for previous rounds of base closings never directly targeted specific geographic areas.
House extends sanctions on Iran, Libya
The House yesterday approved a five-year extension of sanctions on foreign companies that invest in Iran and Libya, countries accused by Republicans and Democrats alike of being deeply involved in world terrorism.
Under the measure, the president has numerous sanctions he can impose on offending foreign companies. Among them are blocking the companies from exporting goods to the United States and selling to the U.S. government or obtaining U.S. bank loans.
Many U.S. allies with companies that do energy business oppose the sanctions, and no company has faced sanctions since the law took effect in 1996.
The vote was 409-6. The Senate approved a similar measure on Wednesday by a vote of 96-2. The current Iran and Libya Sanctions Act, made law in 1996, expires Aug. 5.