By Aaron Ross and Benoit Nyemba KINSHASA (Reuters) - Congo police made a pre-dawn raid on a separatist group in Kinshasa on Tuesday, killing four people but failing to arrest their leader, a self-styled religious prophet, witnesses and group members said. Dozens of armed police stormed the home of Ne Muanda Nsemi, leader of Bundu dia Kongo (BDK), a religious cult that seeks to revive the pre-colonial Kongo kingdom that flourished for centuries around the mouth of the Congo river.
Soldiers targeting the Kamwina Nsapu militia group in central Democratic Republic of Congo killed at least 101 people between Feb. 9 and Feb. 13, including 39 women, the U.N. said on Tuesday. The soldiers fired indiscriminately with machine guns when they saw the militia fighters, who were armed mainly with machetes and spears, human rights spokeswoman Liz Throssell said, citing sources in the country. "We are deeply concerned at the reported high number of deaths, which if confirmed would suggest excessive and disproportionate use of force by the soldiers," she said.
MOSCOW/PARIS (Reuters) - The Kremlin denied on Tuesday that it was behind media and internet attacks on the campaign of French presidential frontrunner Emmanuel Macron though his camp renewed the charges against Russian media and a hackers' group operating in Ukraine. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, replying to a question on a daily conference call, said charges made on Monday by Macron's party chief, Richard Ferrand, were absurd. "That there is a hysterical anti-(President Vladimir) Putin campaign in certain countries abroad is an obvious fact." Ferrand said on Monday that the French centrist politician, who is now seen by opinion polls as the favorite to win election in May, had become a "fake news" target of Russian media and that his campaign was facing thousands of internet attacks.
BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) â€” Romania's president says the government's 2017 budget plan is "risky" and he has concerns about overspending.
PARIS (AP) â€” It's a drizzly day in Paris but that didn't stop lovers from around the world celebrating Valentine's Day romance in the City of Light.
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) â€” The developer of the world's tallest building says its profit rose to $1.43 billion last year as it saw a boost in property sales and opened a new opera house in its Dubai home.
WARSAW, Poland (AP) â€” Polish prosecutors filed charges Tuesday against a 21-year-old man who is accused of causing a traffic accident that injured Prime Minister Beata Szydlo and two other people last week.
HAMDANIYAH, Iraq (AP) â€” The Iraqi army has been moving troops around Mosul ahead of an expected push to retake its western half from the Islamic State group in the final decisive battle for the city, a commander said Tuesday.
WASHINGTON (AP) â€” Fired by one American commander in chief for insubordination, Michael Flynn has now delivered his resignation to another.
"I take this miserable and vile attack as recognition of my status as an anti-imperialist revolutionary," El Aissami, the heir apparent to Socialist President Nicolas Maduro, wrote on Twitter. The US Treasury Department on Monday accused El Aissami and an ally, businessman Samark Jose Lopez Bello, of being drug kingpins, freezing their US assets.
FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) â€” France's PSA Group, maker of Peugeot and Citroen cars, says it's exploring a "potential acquisition" of Opel, General Motors' money-losing European business.
BERLIN (AP) â€” German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Tunisian Prime Minister Yousseh Chahed have paid tribute to the 12 people killed and dozens injured in a truck attack on a Christmas market in Berlin carried out by a Tunisian man whose asylum application was rejected.
Gareth Bale will have to wait for his return to action after three months out as the Welshman wasn't included in Zinedine Zidane's squad for Real Madrid's Champions League clash with Napoli on Wednesday. Bale only returned to full training for the first time on Sunday since suffering ankle ligament damage in November. Cristiano Ronaldo is included in Zidane's 19-man squad for the first leg of the European champions' last 16 tie after shrugging off a knock picked up in Saturday's 3-1 win at Osasuna.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Tuesday pushed Tunisia's prime minister to speed up the returns of rejected asylum seekers, as Tunis rebuffed criticism that it was blocking repatriations. The German leader has been battling to get Tunis to take back its citizens, with the issue taking on greater urgency since the deadly assault on a Berlin Christmas market in December. The jihadist attack which claimed 12 lives has been blamed on Anis Amri, a Tunisian whose asylum application had been rejected half a year earlier, but could not be expelled because of Tunisian bureaucratic delays.
By Alexander Cornwell DUBAI (Reuters) - Iran is implementing the deal on its nuclear program agreed with world powers, the head of the U.N. atomic energy watchdog said on Tuesday, amid concerns the United States will try to alter the terms. The United States has taken a tougher stance on Iran since President Donald Trump took office on Jan. 20, including saying it had put the Islamic Republic "on notice" last month over carrying out a ballistic missile test. Under the 2015 accord between Tehran and six world powers, Iran agreed to curb its nuclear program in exchange for relief from some U.S., European and U.N. economic sanctions.
Turkey-backed rebels have largely taken control of Syria's al-Bab from Islamic State militants, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said on Tuesday, but a war monitoring group said the jihadists still controlled most of the town. Syrian rebels, backed by Turkish special forces, tanks and warplanes, swept into northern Syria in August in an operation, dubbed "Euphrates Shield" by Ankara, to push Islamic State from Turkey's border and stop the advance of Kurdish fighters.
By Andrew Cawthorne and Alexandra Ulmer CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela's powerful Vice President Tareck El Aissami on Tuesday called his blacklisting by the United States on drug charges an "imperialist aggression" in the first bilateral flare-up under the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump. "Truth is invincible and we will see this vile aggression dispelled." The U.S. Department of Treasury on Monday sanctioned El Aissami and Samark Lopez, whom it identified as his associate, on accusations of masterminding an international network shipping drugs to Mexico and the United States. "Mr. Lopez is not a government official and has not engaged in drug trafficking," he said in a statement on his website describing himself as a "legitimate businessman." President Nicolas Maduro's government has frequently cast U.S. and opposition accusations of drug-trafficking, corruption and human rights abuses as a false pretext to justify meddling in Venezuela and a push to topple him.
By Ned Parker and Ju-min Park UNITED NATIONS/SEOUL (Reuters) - The U.N. Security Council denounced North Korea's weekend missile launch, urging members to "redouble efforts" to enforce sanctions against the reclusive state, but gave no indications of any action it might take. Pyongyang's test of the intermediate-range ballistic missile on Sunday was its first direct challenge to the international community since U.S. President Donald Trump took office on Jan. 20. At a news conference on Monday, Trump said: "Obviously North Korea is a big, big problem and we will deal with that very strongly." Trump did not speak of any planned response but Washington's U.N. ambassador Nikki Haley said in a statement: "It is time to hold North Korea accountable â€“ not with our words, but with our actions." She issued the statement after an emergency Security Council meeting on Monday that was called by the United States, Japan and South Korea to discuss the North's missile launch.
By Clare Baldwin and Andrew R.C. Marshall MANILA (Reuters) - Before Rodrigo Duterte's bloody war on drugs had even begun, allies of the Philippines president were quietly preparing for a wider offensive. On June 30, as Duterte was sworn in, they introduced a bill into the Philippine Congress that could allow children as young as nine to be targeted in a crackdown that has since claimed more than 7,600 lives. The bill proposes to lower the minimum age of criminal responsibility from 15 to 9 years old to prevent what it calls "the pampering of youthful offenders who commit crimes knowing they can get away with it." "You can ask any policeman or anyone connected with the law enforcement: We produce a generation of criminals," Duterte said in a speech in Manila on December 12.
By Ju-min Park and Joseph Sipalan SEOUL/KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) - The estranged half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has been killed in Malaysia, a South Korean government source told Reuters on Tuesday. Kim Jong Nam, the older half brother of the North Korean leader, was known to spend a significant amount of his time outside the country and had spoken out publicly against his family's dynastic control of the isolated state. Police in Malaysia told Reuters on Tuesday an unidentified North Korean man had died en route to hospital from Kuala Lumpur airport on Monday.
Prosecutors summoned the scion of South Korean giant Samsung again on Monday in connection with a corruption scandal that led to the impeachment of President Park Geun-Hye. Lee Jae-Yong, Samsung Electronics vice chairman and the son of the Samsung group chairman Lee Kun-Hee, has been quizzed multiple times over his role in the scandal that has rocked the nation. The de-facto leader of Samsung narrowly avoided being formally arrested last month when prosecutors accused him of bribing Park's confidante to the tune of nearly $40 million.
WASHINGTON (AP) â€” A top White House official sidestepped repeated chances Sunday to publicly defend embattled national security adviser Michael Flynn, leaving the fate of one of President Donald Trump's senior aides uncertain following reports that he discussed U.S. sanctions with a Russian envoy before Trump's inauguration.
President Donald Trump fired off tweets to settle scores from his Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida, defending his tough stance on illegal immigrants, taunting judges and praising an advisor. The White House confirmed Sunday that Trump is weighing a new executive order on immigration, defying federal court rulings that struck down his ban on refugees and other travelers from seven predominantly Muslim countries. Senior advisor Stephen Miller accused the judges of taking for themselves power that belongs "squarely in the hands" of the president.
North Korea said Monday it had successfully tested a new ballistic missile, triggering a US-led call for an urgent UN Security Council meeting after a launch seen as a challenge to President Donald Trump. The North's leader Kim Jong-Un "expressed great satisfaction over the possession of another powerful nuclear attack means which adds to the tremendous might of the country", state news agency KCNA said. The missile was launched Sunday near the western city of Kusong and flew east about 500 kilometres (310 miles) before falling into the Sea of Japan (East Sea), South Korea's defence ministry has said.
LIMA, Peru (AP) â€” The leader of Peru asked U.S. President Donald Trump on Sunday to deport a former Peruvian president sought in the South American nation on suspicion of taking bribes as part of a regional corruption scandal.