September 30, 2016
From Washington, this is VOA news. I'm David DeForest reporting.
Secretary of State John Kerry says the U.S. is "on the verge" of suspending talks with Russia concerning Syria.
Kerry said Thursday bilateralengagement with Russia over Syria is "irrational in the context of the kind of bombing taking place."
"It's one of those, you know, moments where we're going to have to pursue other alternatives for a period of time, barring some clearer indication by the warring parties that they're prepared to consider how to approach this more effectively."
Kerry spoke Thursday during a Washington forum.
Meanwhile, the United Nations is calling for the immediate medical evacuation of hundreds of wounded people from the rebel-held eastern Aleppo. Lisa Schlein reports.
U.N. Deputy Special Envoy for Syria Ramzy Ezzeldin Ramzy says the task force focused on the major threat to the civilian population posed by the extremely heavy aerial bombardment of the eastern Aleppo.
He says the task force also criticized the indiscriminate shelling in government-controlled western Aleppo. "The bombing must stop."
Ramzy says the medical situation is particularly dire. He notes many hospitals have been damaged by airstrikes and medical supplies in this city are dwindling.
Lisa Schlein, Geneva.
U.S. President Barack Obama is flying to Israel, where he will speak at the funeral of former Israeli leader Shimon Peres.
Mr. Obama will lead a delegation of 32 U.S. officials.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas plans to travel to Jerusalem Friday to attend the funeral, hoping to send a message that the Palestinians are for peace.
This is VOA news.
Major U.S. presidential candidates Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton are campaigning Thursday in the states where they won their first electoral victory on the path to the White House.
Trump campaigned in New Hampshire and Clinton made an appearance in Iowa.
Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson had another embarrassing moment Wednesday when he was unable to name even one current leader of a foreign country.
In a townhall-style televised interview, MSNBC host Chris Matthews asked the presidential hopeful to name his favorite foreign leader. Johnson sat speechless.
"I guess I'm having an Aleppo moment," Johnson said in a reference to an earlier interview. In that interview, he was asked about Syria and replies "What is Aleppo?"
At least one person was killed and more than 100 injured Thursday when a commuter train crashed into a busy rail station in Hoboken, New Jersey.
A Hoboken city spokesman says the train derailed and plowed through the platform during the morning rush hour.
"I was actually at the opposite end of the terminal when I heard the noise. When I exited the office, folks were running away from the train, screaming and things like that."
Other witnesses reported seeing one woman pinned under concrete and people bleeding after the train crashed through a barrier. It came to a stop between an indoor waiting area and the platform, causing the collapse of a section of the metal roof.
The cause of the crash has not been determined.
India's army said Thursday it launched what it called "surgical strikes" against suspected militants along the border with Pakistan.
The strike follows a militant attack on an Indian army base earlier this month in Kashmir that killed 18 soldiers.
Somalia's government is demanding an explanation from the United States for a Wednesday airstrike in central Somalia.
The Pentagon said in a news release on Thursday that its forces launched what it called a "self-defense" strike against al-Shabaab militants near the town of Galkayo. At least nine militants were killed in the attack.
A local official tells VOA the attack killed 13 state soldiers.
Amnesty International released a report Thursday saying Sudanese government forces have used what appears to be chemical weapons in remote regions of Darfur.
An investigation carried out by the human rights group finds evidence of at least 30 likely chemical attacks, claiming the lives of between 200 and 250 people.
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has formally signed and put into practice a peace pact with an ethnic Pashtun warlord.
Gulbuddin Hekmatyar addressed the signing ceremony held at the presidential place in Kabul via a video link.
In Washington, I'm David DeForest.
That's the latest world news from VOA.