October 16, 2018

VOA news. I'm Christopher Cruise reporting.

Saudi Arabia is preparing to admit that the missing journalist, Jamal Khashoggi, was killed. That report coming from two American news organizations, quoting sources who say Khashoggi's death was "an interrogation that went wrong."

CNN reports those behind the operation may have intended to kidnap Khashoggi from the Saudi consulate in Istanbul and take him back to Saudi Arabia for questioning.

Stories say the Saudi report is expected to say that the operation that led to Khashoggi's death was carried out without official clearance and that those behind his death will be held responsible.

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Monday designated five groups as "top transnational organized crime threats." He targeted them for increased prosecutions by the Justice Department using tax laws, firearms laws and other means to prosecute the groups and their members.

The five include the Lebanese Hezbollah and the Central American street gang MS-13.

Facebook on Monday told the Reuters news agency that it will ban false information about voting requirements and will fact-check fake reports of violence or long lines at polling stations ahead of next month's U.S. midterm elections. It's the latest effort by the company to reduce voter manipulation on its service.

A migrant caravan that began in northern Honduras has grown for about thousand to about 1,700 people. Some of them were walking, some in vehicles but they all have a common goal. They want a better life and many of them want to seek that life in the United States.

The march organizer says the marchers are fleeing poverty and violence back home.

This is VOA news.

The al-Naseeb border crossing between Jordan and Syria [opened] reopened Monday after a three-year-long closure.

The crossing is important for overland trade in the region including for Syria's neighbor Lebanon.

Correspondent Edward Yeranian reports for VOA from Cairo.

Economic observers said the border passage generated nearly $600 million in trade yearly before war in Syria began in 2011. More than 7,000 trucks were estimated to have crossed between the two countries daily.

Arab media also reported U.N. peace-keepers officially took control of the Quneitra crossing between Israel and Syria. Syria's main border crossing with Iraq at Albukamel remains in the hands of U.S.-backed Kurdish forces and is closed due to fears of Iran using it to smuggle weapons into the region.

Representatives from North and South Korea met at the demilitarized zone Monday.

They talked about the implementation agreements made during a recent meeting between South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un in the North Korean capital.

VOA's Seoul correspondent Steve Miller reports.

North and South Korean leaders agreed in September to intensify cross-border cooperation and exchanges on various fronts.

The Koreas agreed to connect rail and road systems along the east and west coast during the summit among other inter-Korean projects and shared a view to make the Korean peninsula a land of safety without nuclear weapons.

Zimbabwe's government says the country is emerging from a recent economic meltdown, during which shops ran out of goods and drivers spent long hours in lines at gas stations.

But economists say the crisis is not over. They say people have no confidence in the currency or in President Emmerson Mnangagwa's government.

Correspondent Columbus Mavhunga reports for VOA from Harare.

For a decade, the country has been without an official currency and relied on U.S. dollars, the British pound and South African rand to conduct transactions. In the past three years, however, all three currencies have been hard to find, paralyzing the economy.

The introduction of bond notes, a currency Zimbabwe started printing two years ago to ease the situation, has not helped.

The bond notes were supposed to trade at par with the U.S. dollar, but on the black market, a dollar is now equal to close to three bond notes.

You can find more on these and other late breaking and developing stories, from around the world, around the clock, at voanews.com and on the VOA news mobile app. I'm Christopher Cruise, VOA news.