Taslim Elias, former president of the International Court of Justice and the first Nigerian to become his country's attorney general, died Wednesday at a Lagos hospital. He was 76. He became Nigeria's attorney general and justice minister at its independence from Britain in 1960. After six years as law professor at the University of Lagos, he was appointed to the International Court of Justice -- the judicial arm of the United Nations now called the World Court -- in 1972. He was elected the court's vice president in 1979 and its president in 1982. He retired in 1985. He was a member of the committee that drafted the charter of the Organization of African Unity in 1963.
Henry Franklin "Buster" Smith, 86, a jazz composer and musician who had played with Count Basie and Charlie Parker, died of a heart attack Saturday in Dallas. At 19, he joined Count Basie's Blue Devils Band in Kansas City, Mo. In 1941, he returned to Dallas and formed his own touring combo, playing alto saxophone and clarinet. One of his best-known compositions was "One O'Clock Jump."
Sonja Loew, 74, a Boston arts patron, died there Monday of a heart attack. During the 1960s, Mrs. Loew created and directed the Zigani Ballet at New York's Latin Quarter, a nightclub owned by her former husband, E. M. Loew, who also owned a chain of movie theaters. She had been a dental technician, ballroom dance champion and beauty queen.