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National Radio 8am Bulletin

Florida Recount – Tua Fight – Middle East Peace – Philippines – Maori Language – Timor Soldiers – Meningitis – Cigarettes – Blair Privacy – Stranded Ship

FLORIDA RECOUNT: With votes counted in 45 of 67 Florida counties George Bush is 793 votes ahead in the race. Meanwhile a legal challenge is brewing in Palm Beach county where 19,000 ballots were discarded. In the latest development a hand count has been asked for by Gore aids in four counties.

TUA FIGHT: David Tua’s bid to become the world heavyweight champion is likely to bring the heaviest day of sports betting so far.

MIDDLE EAST PEACE: Middle East Peace talks have begun in Washington between Yasser Arafat and Bill Clinton, but they are overshadowed by continuing violence on the West Bank and in the Gaza Strip. IDF forces have shot dead a senior aid to Mr Arafat.

PHILIPPINES: The beleaguered Philippines President Estrada has admitted for the first time that he has been offered bribes. President Estrada says he is ready to prove his innocence in court.

MAORI LANGUAGE: Professor Hohepa says that Te Puni Kokiri took away some parts of the work of the Maori Language Commission that should have been left with the commission.

TIMOR SOLDIERS: More than 200 friends and family members were in Christchurch this morning to welcome home 240 soldiers from East Timor.

MENINGITIS: A vaccine for meningitis should be available in NZ shortly. NZ has been suffering from an epidemic of the disease for some time.

CIGARETTES: Tobacco companies in NZ could soon be legally required to reduce the diameter and density of cigarettes to make them less likely to start fires.

BLAIR PRIVACY: Cherie Blair, wife of UK PM Tony Blair, has launched further legal action to prevent publication of confidential information about her family.

STRANDED SHIP: A second bid to refloat a Malaysian ship with dangerous chemicals aboard stranded on the Great Barrier Reef has failed.

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