February 5, 2017
From Washington, this is VOA news. I'm Michael Brown reporting.
U.S. President Donald Trump's controversial travel ban from seven Muslim-majority countries set off more protests Saturday in several U.S. cities, including here in Washington.
On Saturday, Mr. Trump criticized the federal judge's decision to temporarily block his executive order, calling the ruling, in his words, "ridiculous" and vowing to have it overturned.
An official with the U.S. State Department confirmed to VOA on Saturday that people with valid visas will be allowed into the U.S. and said the agency will release more information as soon as possible.
Iran has conducted missile and radar tests Saturday, a day after the Trump administration imposed new sanctions on Iran for a ballistic missile test this past week. Edward Yeranian reports for VOA from Cairo.
Iranian state TV reported that the country's Revolutionary Guard air force was conducting air defense exercises Saturday, including missile and radar tests over a 35,000-square-kilometer area in the northern province of Semnan.
The TV channel added that Iran's vice president, Eshaq Jahangiri, denounced recent U.S. accusations against Tehran, insisting the Iranian people "do not take them seriously."
Edward Yeranian, for VOA news, Cairo.
From here in Washington, this is VOA news.
U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis says the United States recognizes Japan's administration of the Senkaku Islands, a comment quickly criticized by China Saturday.
Mattis has been in Tokyo meeting with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
He told reporters it was important to let Japan know of the U.S. commitment to their long-standing relationship.
"The reason this is my first trip out of the United States is because of the priority the United States places on the ??? Japan and the concern about the security environment we face here in the northwest Pacific."
Both Japan and China claim sovereignty over the uninhabited, contested islands in the South China Sea area. In addition, Taiwan, Malaysia, Vietnam, the Philippines and Brunei also claim parts of the waters that contain strategic sea lanes and rich fishing grounds as well as oil and gas deposits.
A top Pakistani official has hinted that his government would be willing to discuss with the new Trump administration freedom for Shakil Afridi, the jailed doctor who helped the U.S. hunt down Osama bin Laden.
His remarks to a local television station followed reports of renewed pressure on Pakistan to release Afridi since U.S. President Donald Trump assumed office last month.
Afridi [has] is hailed, rather, as a hero in the United States for helping the CIA obtain the Bin Laden family's DNA by organizing a fake immunization campaign that led American forces to raid and kill the fugitive al-Qaeda chief in his hideout in Pakistan in May of 2011.
A just released U.N. report: charges that thousands of Rohingya children, women, and men have suffered gang rapes, killings and other acts of cruelty at the hands of Myanmar's police and security forces.
The report, issued by the office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, documents testimony from scores of victims who have fled to Bangladesh from Myanmar.
Here now from a lead investigator with the U.N. human rights: "The High Commissioner has been calling on the international community to stand up and take notice of this horrible situation in northern Rakhine state for a very long time now. We've been seeking access, we've been seeking access. The government of Myanmar has been denying that these violations are taking place. We've been saying 'OK. Give us access. We will go, independently assess for ourselves what has happened.'"
A spokesman for the Myanmar government which was provided an advance copy of the report told VOA it will conduct its own investigation into the charges.
And following widespread demonstrations across Romania, the country's prime minister has called for the repeal of a decree decriminalizing official misconduct after earlier saying in the week he would not repeal that decree or support that.
Here in Washington, I'm Michael Brown reporting.
That's the latest world news from VOA.