April 8, 2017
From Washington, this is VOA news. I'm David Byrd reporting.
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley says that her country was "fully justified" in carrying out a strike against a Syrian government airfield.
Haley told an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council Friday that the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime near Idlib necessitated the missile attack.
"The United States took a very measured step last night. We are prepared to do more, but we hope that will not be necessary. It is time for all civilized nations to stop the horrors that are taking place in Syria and demand a political solution."
The U.S. attack came in retaliation for Tuesday's deadly chemical attack that officials said used chlorine mixed with a nerve agent, possibly sarin.
More than 80 people, including several children, were killed in that attack that drew widespread international condemnation.
Meanwhile, Syria's main ally Russia has condemned the U.S. missile attack. Russian President Vladimir Putin said the attack would inflict major damage on U.S.-Russia ties and was in violation of international law.
Russia's Deputy U.N. Ambassador Vladimir Safronkov said the action could have far-reaching consequences.
He said, "We described that attack as a flagrant violation of international law and an act of aggression. We strongly condemn the illegitimate actions by the U.S. The consequences of this for regional and international stability could be extremely serious."
In response to the U.S. attack, Russia said it was suspending an agreement to avoid incidental conflicts between U.S. and Russian warplanes.
This is VOA news.
U.S. President Donald Trump says it's very interesting to spend time with Chinese President Xi Jinping and his delegation.
Trump said they made tremendous progress over dinner Thursday night and he predicted that even more progress will be made in the future.
"I think we have made tremendous progress in our relationship with China. My representatives have been meeting one on one with their counterparts from China and I think truly progress has been made. We'll be making a lot of additional progress."
President Xi said he had received a warm reception from members of the Trump administration and the two sides came to many understandings after holding in-depth and lengthy communications.
President Trump has accepted an invitation for a state visit to Beijing later this year, but no specific details were released.
Xi left home [for his] after the 24-hour summit ended at Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate Friday in Florida.
The U.S. Senate has confirmed Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch, bringing an end to a 14-month long partisan battle that started after the death of Justice Antonin Scalia.
Vice President Mike Pence announced the vote along party lines Friday.
"On this vote, the ayes are 54, the nays are 45. The nomination of Neil M. Gorsuch of Colorado to be an associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States is confirmed."
The victory gives President Donald Trump's 49-year-old nominee a lifetime spot on the court.
The final confirmation came after Senate Republicans rewrote the rules - voting to eliminate the 60-vote filibuster threshold for Supreme Court nominees.
Four people were killed and 15 others injured Friday in Stockholm, Sweden, when a hijacked beer truck drove through a crowd and crashed into a department store.
Stockholm police have arrested one suspect but would not say if they are hunting for others.
Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven visited the scene Friday night, laying flowers and lighting a candle at a makeshift memorial.
The prime minister said flags at Swedish government offices would fly at half-staff Saturday as a sign of national mourning.
The U.S. economy put the brakes on hiring in March with a net gain of only 98,000 jobs, much lower than many economic expected.
Analysts say that stormy weather in March contributed to the downturn.
Friday's report from the Labor Department also said the unemployment rate fell to its lowest level in a decade 4.5 percent.
I'm David Byrd in Washington.
That's the latest world news from VOA.