CANBERRA, Australia, Feb. 12--Vladimir Petrov, the former Soviet spy chief in Australia, said today Guy Burgess and Donald Maclean lied when they asserted they never were Soviet agents.
Petrov, who deserted his spy job in April 1954, issued a statement through the Australian Security Service. He challenged the claims of Burgess and Maclean, the turncoat British diplomats who revealed their presence in Moscow yesterday for the first time since their mysterious disappearance in 1951.
In their statement, the runaways admitted being Communists since their youth, but denied they ever had been spies, as is now charged by the British Foreign Office.
Douglas Sees Huge Gas Bill Outlay
WASHINGTON, Feb. 12--Sen. Douglas (D-Ill.) said today that only the surface has been scratched on what he described as "enormous amounts" spent to influence public opinion on the natural gas bill, now before President Eisenhower. The question of broadening the limited inquiry now under way will be considered by senators this week.
Doughlas, who led the losing fight against Senate passage of the measure last Monday, told a reporter today that in his opinion, a $2,500 political campaign contribution offered to Se. Francis Case (R-S.D.) represented only a "surface indication of what went on."
"I don't question the motives of senators who voted for the gas bill," Douglas said, "but I do know an enormous amount of money was spent to influence public opinion in favor of the bill.
Subcommittee Attacks Handling of Housing
WASHINGTON, Feb. 12--Prolonged delays and "bureaucratic quibbling" threaten to stall completely the military housing program vote by Congress last year, a House subcommittee reported today.
Thus far, it said, none of the authorized 100,000 housing units has been built, although the program is due to expire Sept. 30.
The subcommittee, a unit of the House Banking Committee, recommended a three-year extension and authorization of another 303 million dollars of federal mortgage guarantees to provide better homes for service families.