February 9, 2017
From Washington, this is VOA news. I'm David DeForest reporting.
U.S. President Donald Trump said Wednesday the recent court order suspending his immigration plan was motivated by politics.
Speaking in Washington to law enforcement chiefs, the president warned the nation's security is compromised without the travel restrictions in his executive order.
He said that the case has moved to a locality where it is less likely to end favorably for the administration.
"As you know, in Boston, we won it with a highly respected judge and a very strong opinion, but now we're in an era that, let's just say, they are interpreting things differently than probably 100 percent of the people in this room."
A U.S. appeals court in San Francisco says it will likely rule this week on whether a federal judge had the legal grounds to suspend Mr. Trump's ban last month on immigration from seven terrorism-plagued countries.
The administration denies that it is targeting Muslim nations with the ban.
All sides expect the issue to wind up before the Supreme Court.
Authorities in northern Afghanistan say Islamic State terrorists have killed at least six local employees of the International Committee of the Red Cross.
The Jowzjan province spokesman says the assailants [were abducted] also abducted two Red Cross workers.
Thomas Glass is a spokesman: "We're absolutely devastated by this news. We don't know who's behind. We don't know the motives behind this attack."
The Taliban has denied involvement.
Somali lawmakers elected a new president on Wednesday.
Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, better known as "Farmajo," was declared winner after two rounds of voting by the Somali parliament in Mogadishu.
This is VOA news.
Turkey's military said Wednesday that [rebel forces] Syrian rebel forces have taken control of strategic hills surrounding the Islamic State-held town of al-Bab. The town is a key area in northern Syria that is increasingly becoming a focal point of the conflict.
The U.S. Senate is expected to vote Wednesday to approve Senator Jeff Sessions as the nation's new attorney general.
Sessions has faced sharp opposition from Democrats who question his record on immigration and civil rights.
White House spokesman Sean Spicer spoke about the situation. "Senator Sessions has a long and distinguished legal career, serving as both the U.S. attorney of the southern district of Alabama, and also as Alabama's attorney general. The president looks forward to Senator Sessions's return to the Department of Justice where he will continue his service to our nation as our chief law enforcement officer."
The confirmation vote was delayed as Democrats used Senate rules to stretch out the time they had to speak on the floor.
The United Nations is appealing for $2.1 billion to provide assistance to people in Yemen. Lisa Schlein takes a look.
This is the largest consolidated appeal for Yemen since the Saudi Arabian coalition began bombing the country March 26, 2015 in support of the government in its battle against the Houthi rebels.
U.N. officials say the amount of money needed is a symptom of the humanitarian crisis facing this war-torn country. They say airstrikes have demolished bridges, key roads, entire neighborhoods and ports, leaving millions of people without electricity, water and food.
Lisa Schlein, Geneva.
British lawmakers voted Wednesday to allow Prime Minister Theresa May to go ahead with proceedings for withdrawing Britain from the European Union.
The bill now goes to the House of Lords, where it is also expected to pass.
The top U.S. commander in Iraq says he expects anti-Islamic State forces to retake the cities of Mosul and Raqqa within the next six months.
Speaking north of Baghdad Wednesday, U.S. Army Lieutenant General Stephen Townsend said Islamic State fighters will still be around in the next few months "but they can't lay claim that they have a physical caliphate."
Romania's government has survived a no-confidence vote in parliament. The vote comes amid a storm of protests over legislation passed last week that would have decriminalized some official corruption.
The government eventually scrapped the ordinance.
Pennsylvania Senate voted overwhelmingly Wednesday to approve legislation banning abortions at 20 weeks and putting restrictions on how other abortions are performed.
From the VOA news center in Washington, I'm David DeForest.
That's the latest world news from VOA.