HILARY ROXENAMED. ROMANO PRODI,59, principled former Italian Prime Minister and economist who steered his country to acceptance in the European Union by slashing the budget deficit and inflation rate, as president of the European Commission; in Berlin. Known for integrity and solid economic credentials, Prodi was elected unanimously by E.U. leaders. They must now replace the 19-member commission that resigned two weeks ago amid charges of corruption and waste.RELEASED. BULGAN,40, widow of murdered Mongolian politician Sanjaasurengiin Zorig; in Ulan Bator. Arrested three weeks ago in connection with her husband's death, Bulgan was set free after police failed to issue any charges against her.DIED. MICHAEL ARIS,53, steadfast husband of Burmese democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi, who lived apart from his wife after she returned to her homeland in 1988, from prostate cancer; in London. Suu Kyi married the British professor of Tibetan studies in 1972, warning him that she might go back to Burma one day to aid in her people's political struggle. She has not left the country since returning, and Aris, whose cancer spread to his spine and lungs, made his last visit in late 1995. Despite worldwide appeals, Burma declined to grant the ailing Aris a visa, and Suu Kyi feared she would not be allowed back into her country if she had flown to see him in England.DIED. VYACHESLAV CHORNOVIL,61, a founding father of the Ukranian fight for independence from the Soviet Union, in a car crash; near Borispol, Ukraine. The legislator, who lost a bid for the presidency in 1991 despite garnering nearly a quarter of the vote, endured 12 years in Soviet prisons and five years in Siberian exile for his role in the Ukranian autonomy movement. In 1992, the former journalist was named chairman of the Rukh party, which recently underwent a bitter division following a decline in its popularity.DIED. CAL RIPKEN SR.,63, salty, chain-smoking, long-serving contributor to Baltimore Orioles baseball, of lung cancer; in Baltimore, Maryland. In addition to devoting 36 years to the club as a minor-league catcher and manager and a major-league manager and scout, Ripken Sr. raised two sons who later joined the club--Billy, who had a short stint as an infielder, and Cal Jr., a record-breaking shortstop.DIED. ERNIE WISE.73, brilliant British straight man of the classic comic duo Morecambe and Wise; in Slough, England. At age seven, Ernest Wiseman joined his father in clog-dancing routines at workingmen's clubs, and by the time he reached 13, he was dubbed Britain's Answer to Mickey Rooney. Adopting the stage name Wise, he formed an alliance with Eric Morecambe in 1941. They starred in a TV series that at its zenith boasted 28 million viewers. Wise's career plunged after Morecambe's 1984 death and ended with shows on the QE2 and cabaret appearances.FILED. By TERRY ANDERSON, 51, former Middle East bureau chief for the Associated Press, a $100 million lawsuit against Iran for underwriting the Islamic militants in Lebanon who held him hostage for nearly seven years; in Washington. In 1996, the U.S. allowed Americans to file suits against countries alleged to sponsor terrorism. Though courts have granted millions of dollars in at least three cases, no plaintiff has yet received payment. Anderson seeks recompense for the years he spent shackled, blindfolded, taunted and beaten by his captors.