December 6, 2016
From Washington, this is VOA news. I'm David DeForest reporting.
Russia and China Monday blocked a draft United Nations Security Council resolution calling for a seven-day cease-fire in the Syrian city of Aleppo.
U.S. Deputy Ambassador Michele Sison was not pleased. "Today, we had a chance not to end - but to briefly stop - the ongoing butchery in eastern Aleppo. We have failed because of a cynical act. With a wave of their hands, Russia, China, and Venezuela showed that they don't want the suffering of eastern Aleppo to end."
Russia's ambassador said the resolution would only worsen the suffering of civilians by enabling the rebels to regroup.
NATO's foreign ministers hold year-end talks in Brussels Tuesday. They will be focusing on forging closer ties with the European Union. The EU recently unveiled an ambitious new plan for defense funding and research.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says the situation in Syria involves more in just who holds Aleppo. "Even if Aleppo were to fall, not gonna end the war. And ultimately Russia and Assad and the Iranians and others have to all understand that, that there are deep sectarian and other divisions and interests that are going to have to be resolved in order to end that war." :John Kerry talking to NATO representatives.
The foreign ministers of China and Iran are urging governments that signed the Iran nuclear accord to continue to adhere to the agreement regardless of what they called "any changes in the domestic situations of the countries concerned."
This is VOA news.
France's Socialist Prime Minister Manuel Valls has announced he will run for president in next year's election.
Speaking Monday to an audience outside of Paris, Mr. Valls said he will quit his job as prime minister on Tuesday in order to focus on his run for president.
He will face other candidates in the Socialist party primary coming up in January.
Austrian presidential candidate Alexander Van der Bellen, an independent supported by the Green Party, is the projected winner of Sunday's election in Austria.
Euroskeptic Norbert Hofer appears to have lost by [7 percent] a 7 percentage point margin.
U.S. President-elect Donald Trump has picked neurosurgeon Ben Carson, formerly one of his Republican rivals, to be secretary of housing and urban development when his new administration takes office.
Trump said Monday that Carson "has a brilliant mind and is passionate about strengthening communities and families within those communities."
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Monday he will visit Pearl Harbor later this month. It'll be the first time a Japanese leader has visited the U.S. naval base that Japan bombed back in 1941. That surprise attack precipitated the American entry into World War II.
With the Turkish lira this year's worst performing emerging market currency, Turkey's president is declaring a patriotic war in support of the lira. Dorian Jones takes a look.
The Turkish lira has fallen more than 10 percent in the past month, adding to a year of heavy losses and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan says the currency crisis is a latest plot to unseat him.
A failed coup took place in July and Erdoğan is warning that what conspirators could not achieve with tanks, are now trying by financial means.
He called Sunday for all Turkish patriots to act. "Those who keep dollar or euro currency under their mattresses should come and turn them into liras or gold," he says.
Dorian Jones, Istanbul.
Meanwhile, a Greek court has ruled against the extradition of three Turkish soldiers accused of involvement in July's coup. The three soldiers, part of a group of eight who fled to Greece, have denied the allegations.
A Gambian court has ordered the release of an opposition leader and 18 other political prisoners. That release order comes just days after President Yahya Jammeh lost an election and agreed to step aside.
New Zealand Prime Minister John Key resigned Monday. Key said good leaders know when it's time to go.
He lamented the sacrifices his political career has imposed on his wife and two children.
Key is expected to formally submit his resignation next month at his party's national caucus.
In Washington, I'm David DeForest.
That's the latest world news from VOA.