January 8, 2017
From Washington, this is VOA news. I'm David Byrd reporting.
The FBI is still trying to learn why a 26-year-old Iraq war veteran opened fire in Fort Lauderdale, Florida's, airport Friday.
In Anchorage, Alaska, local police chief Chris Tolley said his department is working with federal authorities to find out why Esteban Santiago opened fire, killing five people and wounding six.
"The investigation continues and we are working tirelessly to assist our law enforcement partners from the Broward County Sheriff's department and the FBI."
Santiago, a former Alaska and Puerto Rico National Guardsman, who served a tour of duty in Iraq, traveled to Florida from Anchorage, Alaska, by way of Minnesota.
In Fort Lauderdale, he took a handgun out of his checked baggage, loaded it and started shooting.
Five people died and six others were wounded.
Anchorage FBI special agent in charge Marlon Ritzman said Saturday there is no indication Santiago was working with anyone else in the Anchorage area.
President-elect Donald Trump posted a series of tweets calling those who oppose good ties with Russia "stupid" and "fools" on Saturday.
The president-elect said having good relations with Russia was "not a bad thing" and that "only stupid people or fools would think that it is bad."
Trump added that Russia would respect the United States more when he is president than it does under Barack Obama.
The posts came after a U.S. intelligence report said Russian President Vladimir Putin had made a concerted effort, including using computer hacks, fake news and propaganda to aid Trump's election victory.
The report said Putin aspired to disrupt the U.S. election, discredit Hillary Clinton and undermine Americans' faith in the democratic process.
This is VOA news.
At least 48 people were killed Saturday when a car bomb exploded near Syria's border with Turkey. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the explosion possibly from a tanker truck bomb happened in a busy marketplace in the rebel-held town of Azaz.
Video from the scene showed flattened burning buildings and wounded locals struggling to escape the immediate blast area.
Local activists placed the death toll as high as 60 and search and rescue teams scrambled to locate survivors hours after the blast.
In separate developments Saturday, government forces near Damascus pressed forward with an offensive in the Barada Valley aimed at pushing rebels and jihadists from territory that supplies the capital with water.
The Observatory said at least nine people were killed on the outskirts of Damascus.
Mutinous soldiers in Ivory Coast have released the country's defense minister and several other officials after holding them captive in Bouake.
Alain-Richard Donwahi had flown into Bouake earlier Saturday in a bid to defuse a crisis sparked by soldiers taking to the streets demanding bonuses, pay raises, housing and faster promotion.
Soldiers had surrounded the house where Donwahi was meeting with a delegation of mutineers, firing their rifles in the air and demanding they be paid immediately.
President Alassane Ouattara had earlier in the evening announced that a deal had been reached between the two sides and asked soldiers to return to their barracks.
The soldiers had taken over Bouake on Friday and the dispute had spread to the country's commercial capital, Abidjan, and other cities.
Ghana's newly elected president, Nana Akufo-Addo, has been sworn into office in a peaceful handoff of power. The new president told thousands gathered [in] crowds (in) Independent Square that his aim is to make his country prosperous and to benefit his people.
"The doors of Ghana are open again. The shutters are up again. There could not be a better opportunity to make in Ghana and to make it in Ghana. Ghana is open for business again."
The 72-year-old Akufo-Addo won the election December 7 on his third run for the presidency. He defeated incumbent John Dramani Mahama with the largest victory margin for a presidential candidate since 1996.
A bomb exploded at a restaurant in Mogadishu, Somalia, on Saturday, killing three people and injuring more than 16 others.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility. Suspicion centered on the Islamist extremist group, al-Shabaab.
For more on these stories, log on to our website voanews.com. I'm David Byrd in Washington.
That's the latest world news from VOA.