People: Evangelist praises Great Leader

THE evangelist Billy Graham, renowned for hobnobbing with the likes of Nicolae Ceausescu and lavishing praise on them, has befriended another world leader of ill repute. On a visit to North Korea, the Baptist minister was bewitched by Kim Il Sung and evidently taken in by his vision for the reunification of the peninsula. 'I am for the unification of the country,' Mr Graham said. 'The Great Leader has said that he hopes the country's reunification would be done during the 1990s. So do I'

The Great Leader, as Mr Kim is affectionately known to his citizens, has proposed a '10-point programme of the great unity of the whole nation for the reunification of the country'. By way of persuasion, Mr Kim is building a few nuclear bombs and has posted several divisions of his troops along the border with the South. At least Mr Graham maintained polite silence this time on his host's human rights record, not thought to be one of the Great Leader's strong suits.

HE MAY BE 77, but President Francois Mitterrand is the man most French women dream of spending an evening with, according to a poll by Harlequin publishing house. Asked which politician or show business star would be the best companion for a dream evening, Mr Mitterrand came out on top, well ahead of film star Alain Delon. In the 25-34 age bracket, 15 per cent of women fantasised about an evening with the President.

ANOTHER ageing French sex symbol has been attracting less benign attention. Brigitte Bardot, who, after saving the seals, launched a campaign against the consumption of horse meat, has received dozens of death threats from outraged gourmets. A spokeswoman for the French meat infor mation centre said Bardot owned a cat. 'Cats are carnivorous. Just what does she feed hers?' she enquired. One butcher said Bardot might next take on snails and oysters: 'What does she eat, grass?'

It is not often that senior figures of law and order can take personal credit for foiling crime, so Joseph Estrada, Vice-President of the Philippines and head of the country's anti-crime commission, can justifiably feel proud. It was his foresight that prevented burglers getting away with 57,000 pesos ( pounds 1,400). The thieves overturned drawers and scattered documents but failed to prise open a vault containing the money at the Philippines International Convention Centre. The vault was well secured, Mr Estrada can now boast, for the break-in occurred at his office. The money, incidentally, was the payroll of his crime-fighting team.

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