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The New York Times

HEATWAVE - As New York City sagged Tuesday under a second day of record high temperatures, city officials said that as many as three people had died from heat-related illnesses, and the region continued to struggle with maddening power failures.

ISRAEL - Seven long weeks of political negotiations after he was elected, Ehud Barak took office as prime minister of Israel on Wednesday and pledged that the pursuit of a "true, lasting peace' would be his foremost concern.

MILOSEVIC - About half an hour before the rally against President Slobodan Milosevic was to begin Tuesday night, the town square of Uzice, Yugoslavia, was mostly empty, but the police were there, scowling.

CUBA - The Clinton administration is quietly moving to expand contacts between the United States and Cuba, pressing a modest opening that largely sidesteps President Fidel Castro's government.

PREDENTIAL CAMPAIGN - Playing off Gov. George W. Bush's close embrace by the Republican establishment and his extraordinary war chest, Sen. John McCain is trying to run his underdog campaign as a Washington outsider.

WHITE SUPREMACISTS - The World Church of the Creator has become one of the fastest-growing and one of the largest hate groups in the country, seizing on every opportunity to promulgate an anti-Jewish, anti-black, anti-Christian doctrine, experts say.

UNITED NATIONS - Trent Lott, the Republican leader, is one of two Senators secretly blocking a final vote on Richard C. Holbrooke as chief diplomat to the United Nations, officials said.

HILARY CLINTON - Hillary Rodham Clinton filed papers Tuesday officially setting up an "exploratory" committee to raise funds for a possible Senate race in New York.

BILL CLINTON - Visiting East St. Louis, Ill., President Clinton spoke of the potential for making money in areas long plagued by stubborn poverty.

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