VOA NEWS

June 1, 2017

From Washington, this is VOA news.



The death toll in Afghanistan's capital Kabul from a massive truck bomb has now risen to 90. More than 300 were wounded.

The bomb exploded Wednesday morning in the central Wazir Akbar Khan section of the city, which is home to embassies and government offices. Dozens of vehicles and buildings were damaged.

Afghan officials said the explosives were packed in a sewage tanker.

The U.S. State Department said 11 American citizens working as contractors were injured, but none of their injuries is considered life-threatening.

The Afghan intelligence agency has blamed the Haqqani network based in neighboring Pakistan. It fights alongside the Taliban. It also said Pakistan's spy agency helped plan the attack.



President Trump is ready to remove the U.S. from the Paris climate change agreement signed in 2016 by President Obama, according to several American media outlets.

The U.S.-based website Axios, citing senior White House officials with direct knowledge of Trump's decision, was the first to report that Trump decided to pull out of the deal.

After news of Trump's decision leaked Wednesday, the president took to Twitter to say that he would announce his intentions "over the next few days."

He refused to endorse the agreement during a meeting this past weekend at the G7 summit with other world leaders. He previously said he believes climate change is a hoax being perpetuated by the Chinese.

The agreement is meant to curve the earth's heating by cutting carbon dioxide emissions from burning fossil fuels and to reduce any further negative impacts from climate change.



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Two U.S. aircraft carriers have begun military exercises together in the Sea of Japan.

U.S. Navy officials tell VOA "The USS Carl Vinson Strike Group and the USS Ronald Reagan Strike Group are conducting routine operations in the Western Pacific."

Officials said the carriers, along with the ships and the aircraft assigned to each, began dual operations in international waters within the sea on Wednesday.

The dual-carrier exercises come days after North Korea launched another missile into the Sea of Japan.

Navy spokesman Lieutenant Loren Terry says the multi-day, multi-carrier exercises provide "combatant commanders with significant operational flexibility should these forces be called upon in response to regional situations."

American ships and aircraft routinely operate in international waters throughout the Western Pacific, which includes waters surrounding the Korean Peninsula.

Philip Alexiou, VOA news.



Hours after President Trump criticized entertainer Kathy Griffin Wednesday for appearing in a photograph and video holding a reproduction of a severed bloody head that resembled the president, Griffin has lost a high-paying television job. CNN has terminated in an agreement with her to co-host its New Year's Eve coverage.

Earlier in the day, it said the picture was disgusting and offensive.

In a tweet, Trump said the image was disturbing, particularly to his children.

After seeing so much negative online reaction, Griffin apologized Tuesday night but it was too late the damage was done.



Floods and landslides that followed monsoon rains in Sri Lanka have now killed at least 202 people.

The country's Disaster Management Center said 96 people are still missing and almost 80,000 people have been displaced. They are living in temporary shelters.

The rain began falling late last week. Flooding and mudslides have destroyed hundreds of buildings and homes and have covered roads and farmland. More than 600,000 people have been affected.

The United Nations, the United States, China, Japan, Pakistan, Australia and India are among the nations that have promised to help with the relief effort.



A man has been arrested and two others are missing in China after claims they discovered labor violations at a company that makes shoes for Ivanka Trump, the daughter of President Trump.

China Labor Watch is a New York-based advocacy group. It employed the men and reported their arrest and disappearances Wednesday.

The activists had been secretly investigating labor conditions at two Chinese factories that make shoes for Trump and other brands. China Labor Watch said the three men disappeared on Saturday.



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