August 13, 2016
From Washington, this is VOA news. I'm David Byrd reporting. At least 18 people were killed in Syria's northern Aleppo province Friday when airstrikes hit opposition areas, including a village, a hospital and a market.
The air raids hit the only hospital for women and children in the town of Kafr Hamra, killing two staffers. The town is near the northern front-line in Aleppo where government troops have virtually surrounded 300,000 residents.
Meanwhile, Syrian Democratic Forces say they've seized full control of the Islamic State's stronghold of Manbij near the Turkish border. A spokesman for the SDF told Reuters its forces were sweeping the city after the last Islamic State militants in the city fled.
[Shafra] Sharfan Darwish, that is, of the SDF-allied Manbij Military Council said the U.S.-backed forces had also freed more than 2,000 civilian hostages whom Islamic State had been using as human shields.
The U.S. Department of Defense says that prominent Islamic State leader Hafiz Sayed Khan was killed in an airstrike last month in Afghanistan.
Deputy Press Secretary Gordon Trowbridge said that the strike came when U.S. and Afghan special forces were carrying out anti-Islamic State operations in southern Nangarhar province.
Trowbridge said Sayed was known to directly participate in attacks against U.S. and coalition forces and the action of his network terrorized Afghans.
Last July, Afghan authorities erroneously reported that Sayed khan had been killed by a drone strike in Nangarhar. However, Afghanistan's ambassador said Friday he had seen confirmation of Sayed's death from Afghan security forces.
For more, visit our website. This is VOA news.
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump was stumping in Pennsylvania on Friday, repeating his claim that he was being sarcastic when he called President Obama the founder of the Islamic State group.
Speaking at a rally in Erie, Pennsylvania, Friday, Trump accused the U.S. media of blowing his statement out of proportion.
"So they knew I was being sarcastic. But now, they're analyzing: 'Did I really mean that?' 'How could I say that? These people are the lowest form of life, I'm telling you."
Trump has drawn criticism from Democrats this week for falsely claiming that President Obama helped start the notorious extremist group.
But the Republican candidate had initially doubled down on his remarks, repeating the claim several times without any sense he was joking.
Trump's campaign has placed strong emphasis on winning Pennsylvania, which last went for a Republican candidate in 1988.
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has released her 2015 tax returns which show that she and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, earned more than $10.5 million last year.
The bulk of their income, more than $6 million, came from speaking fees for appearances largely made before Hillary Clinton launched her campaign last April. The couple gave more than $1 million to charity.
The release is part of the Democratic candidate's efforts to undercut her opponent, Republican Donald Trump. So far, Trump has refused to release his tax returns because they are under audit.
The U.N. Security Council has authorized the deployment of an additional 4,000 troops to South Sudan despite reservations to the move by the government. The Council Friday adopted the U.S.-draft resolution that also threatens an arms embargo on South Sudan's government if it does not cooperate with the deployment.
David Pressman is the U.S. alternate representative to the U.N. for special political affairs: "The government of South Sudan's troops are actively blocking United Nations personnel from carrying out their life saving work, which in some cases has led to the deaths of U.N. peacekeepers."
The vote 11 in favor with 4 abstentions.
And, health officials in Nigeria are preparing for a massive poliovaccination campaign after two new cases emerged, a major health setback for the country which had been on track to eliminate the virus.
Nigerian health officials say they plan to vaccinate nearly five million children beginning this month in the northeastern state of Borno, where the latest cases emerged.
Boko Haram militants in Borno have publicly denounced vaccination campaigns and have prevented health workers from operating in the area.
For more, visit our website. I'm David Byrd in Washington.
That's the latest world news from VOA.