VOA NEWS

May 22, 2017

From Washington, this is VOA news.



U.S. President Donald Trump called Sunday for a Muslim unity in the fight against terrorism, telling dozens of Arab and Muslim leaders at a regional summit in Riyadh that it was a battle between good and evil.

"Today, billions of faces are now looking at us, waiting for us to act on the great question of our time. Will we be indifferent in the presence of evil? Will we protect our citizens from its violent ideology? Will we let its venom spread through our societies? Will we let it destroy the most holy sites on earth?"

Trump singled out Iran, accusing Tehran of contributing to instability in the region.



The United Nations Security Council plans to have an emergency meeting Tuesday in response to North Korea's latest ballistic missile test. Uruguay's mission to the U.N. said the meeting was requested by the United States, South Korea and Japan.

Seoul's military said the missile was fired Sunday afternoon local time from South Pyeongan province and flew about 500 kilometers before landing in the Sea of Japan. It was North Korea's second missile test in a week and its 10th this year.

A joint chiefs statement said, "Our military is closely monitoring signs for additional provocation by the North Korean military and we are keeping a full military readiness."

In response to North Korea's earlier tests, President Trump dispatched a naval strike group to waters off the Korean peninsula.



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As President Trump focused on a major address to Muslim leaders at a summit in Riyadh, back home the day's news shows were dominated by talk of his firing of FBI chief James Comey and investigations into the Trump campaign's links to Russia.

Two key Trump officials, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, told television interviewers that at a May 10 White House meeting with two Russian diplomats, Trump did bring up Comey's ouster the day before in an effort to show how "distracted" he had been by Comey's investigation of possible Trump campaign collusion with Moscow interests to help him win the election.



Unknown gunmen have killed a German aid worker and her Afghan security guard in Kabul before kidnapping a Finnish woman who worked for an aid organization.

A Finnish Foreign Ministry spokesperson is reported to have confirmed a Finn has been taken hostage, and that there is no information yet on the kidnappers.

There has been no claim of responsibility.

The overnight violence took place outside a guesthouse on the Darulaman road out of the capital city, which houses staff of the Swedish charity Operation Mercy, according to the Afghan Interior Ministry.



Witnesses say hundreds of Syrian rebels and their families have evacuated the last opposition-controlled district in Homs, a key city in western Syria. That was known four years ago as the de facto capital of opposition forces seeking to oust President Bashar al-Assad.

Homs Governor Talal Barazi told reporters the last bus carrying evacuees left the city's Waer district Sunday. He added that all armed fighters had departed, along with their weapons.

Barazi told the state-controlled SANA news agency that government security forces will be deployed in the district and that engineers are working to defuse landmines and other explosives left behind.



Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says the U.S. has expressed its "dismay" to Turkish officials about last week's clash in which Turkish security personnel apparently attacked demonstrators in Washington.

Tillerson told Fox News Sunday that Turkey's ambassador to the U.S. has been told that last Tuesday's violence was "simply unacceptable."



And, Egyptian authorities have referred 48 people to military trial for their alleged involvement in three deadly church bombings.

The Islamic State claimed responsibility for the suicide blasts that targeted churches in December and April.

Egypt's public prosecutor said some of the suspects allegedly formed terror cells in Cairo and the southern province of Qena to carry out the attacks.

Following the attacks, Egypt declared a three-month state of emergency.



That's the latest world news from VOA.