State Department spokesman Margaret Tutwiler announced yesterday that Secretary of State James A. Baker III would cut short his vacation in Wyoming and return to Washington today for a meeting with President Bush and congressional leaders on the Persian Gulf crisis. Baker went to Wyoming Aug. 16 after attending Bush's meeting with King Hussein of Jordan in Kennebunkport, Maine.

Asked at yesterday's daily briefing about Baker's involvement in the current diplomatic efforts to find a solution to the crisis through U.N. Secretary General Javier Perez de Cuellar, Tutwiler replied:

"He's been -- he's been very involved, and in fact this morning when I spoke to him, he told me he has spent at least over one-half of every single day while he has been on his -- it's either nine- or 10-day, trying vacation in Wyoming, and that most days, he has been on the phone from 7 in the morning till 1:30 in the afternoon.

"As you know . . . the secretary has not, I don't believe -- correct me if I'm wrong -- had a day off since January. He's cut his vacation short twice, and yes, he is very involved. I believe, in my absence, {deputy spokesman} Richard {Boucher} has given you all, daily, the foreign ministers that he's talked to, what he's doing. As far as {Perez} de Cuellar, {White House press secretary} Marlin {Fitzwater} said this morning that he expected President Bush to speak with him by phone before he left. I do not know if Secretary Baker, in addition, will speak with him by phone, but I don't even believe there's a meeting with him at the presidential level.