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  AP Top News at 2:15 a.m. EST

Tuesday, January 12, 1999; 2:19 a.m. EST

Tuesday, Jan. 12, 1999

Bulls' Jordan To Retire This Week

CHICAGO (AP) -- Michael Jordan planned to announce his retirement Wednesday at a news conference in Chicago, a source with close ties to the NBA told The Associated Press on Monday night. If so, it would be the second time in five years that the greatest player in NBA history and the most popular athlete since Muhammad Ali walked away from the game. There had been considerable speculation about Jordan's future ever since he hit the final, thrilling shot in Game 6 of the NBA Finals in Utah to lock up the Bulls sixth championship of the decade. That speculation intensified last week, when the NBA players and owners reached a settlement to end the six-month lockout. Jordan is a five-time league MVP, and led the NBA in scoring 10 times and averaged 31.5 points per game.

Clinton Denies High Crimes

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Clinton and House Republicans clashed in impeachment trial papers Monday, the White House claiming perjury and obstruction allegations fall short of high crimes and misdemeanors and GOP lawmakers rebutting: ``If this is not enough, what is?'' Clinton denied ``each and every allegation'' in the House-passed articles of impeachment. The House, in papers filed a few hours later with the Senate, insisted the evidence against the nation's 42nd president ``overwhelmingly supports both charges,'' perjury and obstruction of justice.

Steel Industry Faces Hurdles

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Disappointed at President Clinton's refusal to take stronger action to block cheap steel imports, the president of the largest steelworkers union says he'll look for help in Congress. Lawmakers from steel-producing states stand ready to aid a union that contributed more than $1 million to congressional campaigns since 1997. But even the most ardent supporters acknowledge that success will be difficult and may come too late to be useful. Sen. Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia, the Democratic chairman of the Senate steel caucus, said lawmakers from the 16 states that produce steel are not numerous enough to overcome a propensity toward free-trade policies.

State Dinner Breaks Into Tango

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Clinton rolled up the White House's rugs Monday night for a demonstration of the tango by Robert Duvall. Known for his rugged acting, Duvall found himself performing at a state dinner for Argentine President Carlos Menem, who had said he wanted to experience things un-Argentinian during his visit, but he was intrigued at the idea of seeing the tango in the White House.

U.S. Blood Supply Dwindles

PITTSBURGH (AP) -- Some hospitals postponed elective surgery as severe winter weather worsened the nation's usual post-holiday blood shortage, the Red Cross said Monday. Blood banks are seeking donors. A stockpile of three or four days' worth of blood is typical, but half of America's blood banks have less than a one-day supply. Types O-negative and O-positive are most in demand because they are so common.

China Dissident Missing

BEIJING (AP) -- A dissident who tried to return home from New York has disappeared and is believed to be in the custody of China's police, U.S.-based Chinese exiles said Monday. Zhou Yongjun, a participant in the 1989 democracy demonstrations in Tiananmen Square, made hasty calls on Dec. 21 to a friend and his wife in New York, saying police were about to arrest him and he needed a lawyer. Friends and family did not know where he was calling from and have not heard from him since.

8 Die at Egyptian Soccer Riot

CAIRO, Egypt (AP) -- About 25,000 soccer fans in Egypt pushed and shoved to get into a stadium Monday, triggering a stampede that killed eight people and injured 13 others, police said. The rush occurred at Alexandria Stadium northwest of Cairo after fans heard a playoff match leading up to the national Egypt Cup championship would not be televised live, officials said.

Tokyo Stocks Close Lower

TOKYO (AP) -- Tokyo stock prices closed lower Tuesday. The Nikkei shed 7.51 points to close at 13,360.97. In New York Monday, the Dow fell 23.43 to 9,619.89.

Canadiens 3, Blues 1

MONTREAL (AP) -- Jason Dawe scored his first goal for Montreal as the Canadiens won for the seventh time in eight games, 3-1 over the St. Louis Blues on Monday night. Dawe, with his first goal in 12 games since being claimed off waivers from the New York Islanders on Dec. 15, scored in the first period. Shayne Corson got the winner in the second.


© Copyright 1999 The Associated Press

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