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Crucial flight tape found undamaged

A crucial section of the flight recorder tape charting the last minutes of the stricken El Al Boeing cargo plane before it plowed into an apartment building has been found to be undamaged, the Dutch transport ministry said Monday. The flight recorder, which records aircraft instrument readings, was at first thought to be too damaged to help pinpoint the causes of the Oct. 4 crash, in which 67 people are thought to have died. Police on Monday urged souvenir hunters to turn in pieces of the jet as crews stepped up efforts to find its remnants.

Gorbachev agrees to appear in court

Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev said Monday he was ready to appear before Russia's Constitutional Court, but not at its trial on the future of the Communist Party. The court said Gorbachev had enough time to perform his "civic duty" and testify at the trial, and still leave for Germany to attend Saturday's state funeral of former Chancellor Willy Brandt, who died Thursday at age 78. Sergei Shakhrai, the attorney representing Russian President Boris Yeltsin at the trial, said Gorbachev's testimony may not be needed because there has been enough evidence of the party's activities. The court is deciding the constitutionality of a ban on the Communist Party.

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