September 1, 2020

This is VOA news. Via remote, I'm Marissa Melton.

U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday refused to condemn the teenage shooting suspect accused of killing two people in Kenosha, Wisconsin, saying that he probably would have been killed if he hadn't fatally shot the demonstrators.

Speaking during a White House briefing, Mr. Trump said the suspect was being very violently attacked before he opened fire.

Last week, Kyle Rittenhouse grabbed an AR-15-style rifle and joined several other armed people in the streets of Kenosha where businesses had been vandalized and buildings burned following a police shooting that left Jacob Blake, a Black ma, paralyzed.

By the end of the night, prosecutors say Rittenhouse had killed two people and severely wounded a third.

Mr. Trump also addressed accusation that supporters of his in Portland, Oregon, were themselves being violent. Video widely circulated online shows a caravan of Trump supporters shooting paintballs at protesters. "Paint is a defensive mechanism. Paint is not bullets," the president said. They protested peacefully.

For the first time, a self-identified member of the [mali...] militant movement known as Antifa has been implicated in a fatal shooting. The person is reportedly under investigation for killing a supporter of President Trump on Saturday in Portland, Oregon.

The left-wing protest movement has resorted to violent measures in the past in opposition to right-wing extremist groups that had stopped short of lethal tactics.

The victim, Aaron "Jay" Danielson, was shot in the chest during violent skirmishes between members of a right-wing group called Patriot Prayer in counter [demonstrators] demonstrations that included Antifa and others.

Police are investigating and have not named a suspect in the shooting.

The FBI has said it is supporting the investigation.

More on this and other stories at our website voanews.com. You're listening to VOA news.

Sudan's transitional power-sharing government has reached a peace deal with an alliance of rebel groups from the troubled western region of Darfur.

The government says it initialed a pact Monday in Juba, the capital of neighboring South Sudan, with a coalition of rebel groups calling themselves the Sudan Revolutionary Front.

The final agreement offers the rebel groups political representation, integration into the national security forces and economic and land rights. The pact also allows for people who fled Darfur to escape the bloodshed to return to their homes.

The negotiations were brokered by South Sudan, which broke away from the larger Sudan in 2011 after years of fighting. A formal signing ceremony was to take place today.

About 300,000 people have been killed in Darfur and 2.5 million others displaced from their homes since rebels took up arms in 2003 against the government of autocratic President Omar al-Bashir. Bashir responded with a counter-insurgency campaign carried out by Arab-dominated Janjaweed militia forces.

Bashir's government was ousted by a popular uprising last year and replaced by a power-sharing government composed of civilian and military leaders.

Belarusian opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya will address the United Nations Security Council on Friday. Tsikhanouskaya is currently in Lithuania. She cites fear for her safety following the election.

[follow] Fellow Baltic state Estonia, a non-permanent member of the Security Council, has invited her to speak to the Security Council.

Meanwhile, Baltic states have imposed travel sanctions on Belarusian leaders, including long-time President Alexander Lukashenko, as protests against his leadership continue.

The demonstrations started after Lukashenko took 80 percent of the vote in a disputed presidential election earlier this month.

High-ranking U.S. and Israeli delegations landed in Abu Dhabi after taking off from Israel's Ben-Gurion Airport on Monday. It was the first-ever commercial flight from Israel to the United Arab Emirates.

The flight passed over Saudi Arabia's [airspiece] airspace - another first for an Israeli commercial flight.

Israel and the UAE agreed to establish diplomatic relations earlier this month with the help of U.S mediation.

The UAE will become the third Arab nation to have normalized relations with Israel after Egypt and Jordan.

And the New York Police Department is unveiling new discipline guidelines to use when an officer misuses his authority.

The NYPD is shifting to formal disciplinary guidelines at a time when law enforcement agencies around the world are in the pressure to be more transparent about officer discipline in the wake of protests.

Via remote, I'm Marissa Melton. You're listening to VOA news.