November 25, 2016
From Washington, this is VOA news. I'm David DeForest reporting.
A truck bomb exploded Thursday at a gas station south of Baghdad, killing at least 70 people. Many of them were traveling back home after taking part in a Shiite holiday in Karbala.
Authorities suspect the Islamic State group was behind the attack.
The United Nations says time is running out for the 275,000 inhabitants of eastern Aleppo in Syria. The city's food supply has been depleted and the U.N. warns people will starve if aid convoys are not allowed into the city soon.
"We need 72 hours countdown from the time when we have green light from armed opposition groups, Russia and the government of Syria. If that comes in, say, 48 hours or whatever, we can be, we can start 72 hours later." That's U.N. Special Envoy Jan Egeland.
He says there are signs that all the necessary approvals may soon be forthcoming.
The U.S. Central Command says a U.S. soldier was killed Thursday in an explosion caused by an improvised explosive device in northern Syria.
Turkish warplanes were put on emergency standby Thursday after Turkey accused Syrian government of carrying out an airstrike on Turkish troops. The Turkish troops were operating near the town of al-Bab.
Western diplomats are concerned that the airstrike risks bringing Syria and Turkey into armed conflicts with each other.
European Union lawmakers called Thursday for a temporary halt to the membership talks with Turkey because of the way the Turkish government has responded to July's failed coup.
Turkey's minister for European Affairs says he will ignore the EU motion. The non-binding motion is for a largely symbolic freeze.
This is VOA news.
Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko said Thursday U.S. President-elect Donald Trump raised the issue of Russian aggression and the illegal annexation of Crimea in a telephone conversation.
Mr. Poroshenko spoke at a joint news conference in Brussels with European Council President Donald Tusk and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker.
Meanwhile, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said Thursday in remarks at Oxford University in England about a phone conversation that the two had last week.
"I spoke with president-elect last week on the phone and he expressed strong support to NATO, he expressed strong support to the idea of NATO, of our collective defense, of our security guarantees and I am certain that will continue to be the case." :Jens Stoltenberg.
There are media reports today that investor Wilbur Ross may be President-elect Donald Trump's choice for commerce secretary.
Ross is known as the "king of bankruptcy" for buying and then restoring distressed companies to profitability.
Americans are marking the annual Thanksgiving holiday today with family gatherings, turkey dinners and parades. The holiday is traditionally been a time of giving thanks to God for the year's bounty.
President Barack Obama gave his final Thanksgiving address as president.
"Today, we continue to give thanks for those blessings, and to all who ensured that they would be our inheritance. We remember the determined patriots who landed at the edge of the world in search of freedom. We give thanks to the brave men and women who defend that freedom in every corner of the world." :Barack Obama.
The director-general of the World Trade Organization cautions against blaming world trade for unemployment. Lisa Schlein reports.
The head of the World Trade Organization, Roberto Azevedo, acknowledges that international trade can be a disruptive factor in some communities and may cost jobs in industries affected by cheap imports. But he says this is far from the whole story.
"While it does that, there is no doubt that trade brings overall benefits to the economy, particularly the economies that are more open and that embrace trade more freely, are the ones that develop most, that are growing faster."
Azevedo says more jobs are being lost through new technologies and innovation as well as the search for higher productivity than through trade.
Lisa Schlein, Geneva.
Hurricane Otto came ashore Thursday in Nicaragua, heading the coast of that country and Costa Rica with 175-kilometer winds.
A 7.0 earthquake struck El Salvador's Pacific coast. No immediate reports of casualties.
A wildfire moved Thursday through the Israeli city of Haifa. Tens of thousands of people evacuated from their homes.
In Washington, I'm David DeForest.
That's the latest world news from VOA.