From Washington, this is VOA news. I'm David DeForest reporting.
The three-day-old Syrian cease-fire appeared shaky, but according to U.N. envoy Staffan de Mistura, it is still holding.
"The reduction of violence, and you will be having further reports we will get after we verify today, is by and large frankly holding, in fact it has been substantial."
The Russian Defense Ministry is accusing U.S. diplomats of hiding behind what it called a "verbal curtain" to camouflage a reluctance to rein in rebel groups.
Meanwhile, insurgent commanders are saying there is little point to the truce while Syria's President Bashar al-Assad continues to block United Nations aid from reaching the city of Aleppo.
Special envoy Jan Egeland told reporters in Geneva he hopes deliveries can be made to the city on Friday.
Prominent U.S. lawmakers met Thursday with Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi. The lawmakers had mixed reactions to President Barack Obama's announcement to lift economic sanctions on Myanmar.
Senator Ben Cardin, the top Democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee, said that America's attention [to] is still needed in Myanmar but the U.S. influence can be exerted more with carrots than with sticks.
Republican Cory Gardner, chairman of the Subcommittee on East Asia and the Pacific, criticized President Obama for making the decision on lifting the sanctions unilaterally.
On the eve of a key European Union summit in Bratislava, French and German leaders are calling for unity and a clear roadmap for a post-Brexit EU.
French President François Hollande warned that the bloc risks a crisis "of its very existence and foundation."
This is VOA news.
Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton is back on the campaign trail after several days recuperating from pneumonia.
Clinton headed to North Carolina, a closely-contested state important to both major candidates
"I'm not great at taking it easy even under ordinary circumstances, but with just two months to go until Election Day, sitting at home was pretty much the last place I wanted to be."
Clinton's Republican challenger, Donald Trump, outlined his new economic plan.
"Over the next ten years, our economic team estimates that under our plan the economy will average 3.5% growth and create a total of 25 million new jobs."
Public opinion polls continue to show Trump edging closer to Clinton. The RealClearPolitics average of polls now shows her with a 1.8 percent advantage.
A New York Times/CBS News poll of likely voters shows her with a 46-44 percent lead. But in a four-way race with two other candidates, Trump and Clinton are deadlocked at 42 percent each.
More than 120 ocean conservation projects, including nearly $2 billion in new pledges and commitments, are being announced at a major maritime conference hosted by the U.S. State Department.
Officials say the measures will affect more than 2 million square kilometers in new or expanded marine protection areas around the world.
Mr. Obama announced Wednesday that he is establishing the first national marine monument in the Atlantic Ocean, the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument, off of the coast of the state of Massachusetts.
The consumer demand, the thing that drives most U.S. economic activity, slowed a bit in August.
Retail [fail] sales fell [ten] three-tenths of a percent last month, according to data published Thursday by the Commerce Department.
A former member of a Philippine death squad told senators in Manila Thursday that Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte shot and killed an employee of the Justice Department and ordered the deaths of [more than 100] more than 1,000 people over the past 25 years.
The hitman, Edgar Matobato, said during a Senate hearing he was one of several policemen on a death squad that took orders from Mr. Duterte while he was serving as mayor of Davao City.
The Philippines top diplomat told a Washington think tank Thursday his government is committed to its long-term alliance with the U.S., but that it will not be lectured on human rights and treated like (quoting now) "little brown brothers of America."
Philippine Foreign Minister Perfecto Yasay called for mutual respect between the two countries.
On Wall Street, U.S. stock indexes were higher at the close of trade today.
In Washington, I'm David DeForest.
That's the latest world news from VOA.