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From Washington, this is VOA News.

Im  Joe Palka reporting.

The Secretary of state said the good progress's on the trade deal. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Today the 12 nations negotiating the massive Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal have made "good progress" toward reaching a final agreement, but that some details remain to be worked out. He highlighted a series of goals for the pact as he spoke during a visit to Singapore, saying the deal would not only create economic opportunities for the countries involved, but also serve as a show of support for "good governance, transparency and accountability." Mr. Kerry will attend the ASEAN forum Tomorrow.

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon praised U.S. President Barack Obama Today for his "visionary and bold leadership" in advancing a plan to sharply cut the carbon pollution produced by American power plants:

On climate change, I highly commend President Obamas strong commitment since Day One in his office up till now and I count on your continuing leadership until well be able to address this one, this climate change and have climate change in December in Paris.”

Mr. Obama's call to cut carbon emissions by 32 is opposed by major U.S. industry groups as too costly and illegal. Mr. Obama said the environmental threat posed by climate change is "perhaps the critical issue" facing the world today.

Forces backing Yemeni President Abdu Rabu Mansour Hadi recaptured an important military base from Houthi rebels on Tuesday, as they continue a push to reverse the Houthi campaign that forced Mr. Hadi to flee the country in March. After several days of fighting, the pro-government forces, backed by airstrikes from a Saudi-led coalition, seized the Al-Anad air base located about 60 kilometers from the port city of Aden.

This is VOA News.

Republican presidential contenders hold their first debate Thursday in Cleveland, the first major event in what promises to be a long and hard-fought battle for the party's 2016 presidential nominationVOA national correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington:

Soaring above the rest of the Republican field on the eve of the first debate is billionaire Donald TrumpHe leads the polls and his blunt talk is drawing big crowds.


There is a movement going on and it is a very strong movementWe want to take back this countryWe have to take it backWe have to take it back."

Trump was not present when Most of the Republican field took part in a candidate's forum Monday in New HampshireBut on Thursday, Only 10 of the 17 contenders will be allowed in the debate, based on their standing in public opinion polls.

But Trump has touched a nerve with frustrated and angry Republican voters, says Karlyn Bowman.

"There is just enormous dissatisfaction with Washington

The stage is now set for the first major face-off of the 2016 campaign

Jim Malone, VOA News, Washington.

For more on the story, visit our website at voanews.com.

Russia has submitted a claim to the United Nations Today for 1.2 million square kilometers of Arctic sea shelf extending more than 650 kilometers from the shore. Under international law, a country has exclusive economic rights over the Arctic shelf within a 370-kilometer radius from its coast. However, Arctic nations have inclined to claim greater areas. Russia, the United States, Canada, Denmark and Norway have tried to assert jurisdiction over parts of the Arctic.

President Barack Obama is planning a major speech Tomorrow to argue for congressional and public support for the international accord to restrain Iran's nuclear program. The president also is meeting with American Jewish leaders later Today to promote the accord. Many Jewish leaders in the United States and Israel have criticized the accord, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu:

The most important point I have to make today is thisThe nuclear deal with Iran doesnt block Irans path to the bomb, to the bomb, it actually paves Irans path to the bomb.”

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Mr. Obama will discuss the key issues that explain why the accord deserves widespread support, and why Congress should back the international effort. Many lawmakers say they need to be convinced the Iran are going to adhere to the deal.

More than 9,000 firefighters are battling to contain 21 wildfires in California that have forced thousands to flee their homes and burned large swathes of land. The largest fire, the Rocky Fire, grew to 263 square kilometers early Tuesday  north of San Francisco.

From the VOA news center in Washington, this is Joe Palka.

That's the latest Wolrd news from VOA.


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