People: Miyazawa puts the squeeze on Kohl

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The Independent Online
A BRIEF delay in seeing Kiichi Miyazawa in Tokyo turned Helmut Kohl from his usual jolly self into a grumpy guest. 'Why do we have to wait?' the German Chancellor growled when told the Japanese Prime Minister was not quite ready to see him on Wednesday, the opening day of the Group of Seven summit meeting. 'Where is he, anyway?'

Asked to take a seat, Mr Kohl eased his bulky frame into a chair obviously made for the slimmer Japanese and sulked until Mr Miyazawa appeared about three minutes later. 'He was probably more annoyed at having to squeeze into that chair than to wait for Miyazawa,' a German official said.

SIX HUNDRED tons of rubbish piles up every day for incineration, but the only signs of organic life that Hillary Clinton and other political wives saw at the state-of-the-art Meguro Incineration Plant in Tokyo were the plants and flowers lining the gleaming corridors. In a departure from the usual first ladies' summit activities, Hillary & Co had a seriously educational day out. Out were tea ceremonies, ikebana floral arrangements, kimono presentations and kabuki theatre. In were the refuse plant, the new city hall (where officials deal with the problems of a metropolis of 12 million people) and the Imperial Palace.

Clutching her souvenir toy tipper truck, Mrs Clinton said she had had a wonderful time.

HE USED to throw his weight around in westerns and Dirty Harry films, but Clint Eastwood is shedding his tough-guy image in his new film. For perhaps the first time in his 30-year career, he will cry openly on the big screen. In the thriller In the Line of Fire, Eastwood plays an alcoholic Secret Service agent still haunted by the assassination of John F Kennedy. The director, Wolfgang Petersen, calls it 'one of those magic moments' in cinema history.

'I'm playing vulnerability,' Eastwood said. 'I've never been against that.' The film flashes back to the 1963 shooting, the darkest hour in Secret Service history and a blow from which many agents assigned to protect Kennedy never recovered.

Eastwood fans need shed no tears, however. There will be shoot-outs and car chases in the film.

WATCHING her weight at Moscow's third McDonald's restaurant was Naina Yeltsin, wife of the Russian President. She skipped the Big Mac but nibbled on chips and sipped a strawberry milkshake after cutting the ribbon to open the newest restaurant. When Boris Yeltsin visited another McDonald's in Moscow a month ago, he tried almost the entire menu.

Mrs Yeltsin got more than a free Ronald McDonald glass to mark her visit. She accepted a McDonald's cheque for 50m roubles to help Russian children with cancer.

(Photograph omitted)