Reuters World News Summary
As Western nations struggled to ramp up the pace of evacuations from Afghanistan amid the chaos and reports of Taliban violence, U.S. President Joe Biden confronted criticism about his administration's planning for the withdrawal of U.S. troops and the Islamic militants' swift takeover of the country. U.S. imposes Nord Stream 2 sanctions; opponents say they won't halt project The Biden administration on Friday slapped sanctions on a Russian ship and two companies involved in the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, but opponents of the nearly completed project said the measures would not stop it.
Following is a summary of current world news briefs.
Brazil's far-right President Jair Bolsonaro raised the stakes in his battle with the country's Supreme Court on Friday, sending the Senate a request for the impeachment of one of its justices, according to the request seen by Reuters. Bolsonaro is seeking to impeach Justice Alexandre de Moraes after he opened an investigation into the president for allegedly leaking to the media a secret federal police report of a hacking that backed up his views that Brazil's electronic voting system was vulnerable to fraud.
Chaos around the Kabul airport was so bad this week that the U.S. military was forced to use three helicopters to transport 169 Americans into the complex from a building just 200 meters (656 feet) away, the Pentagon said on Friday. As Western nations struggled to ramp up the pace of evacuations from Afghanistan amid the chaos and reports of Taliban violence, U.S. President Joe Biden confronted criticism about his administration's planning for the withdrawal of U.S. troops and the Islamic militants' swift takeover of the country.
U.S. imposes Nord Stream 2 sanctions; opponents say they won't halt project
The Biden administration on Friday slapped sanctions on a Russian ship and two companies involved in the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, but opponents of the nearly completed project said the measures would not stop it. The sanctions were imposed on ship Ostap Sheremeta, ship owner JSC Nobility and construction company Konstanta, the State Department said in a report to congressional committees. A copy of the report was seen by Reuters.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday used her final official visit to Russia to tell President Vladimir Putin to free Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, but the Kremlin leader rebuffed her, saying the jailing was unrelated to politics. The talks, as Merkel prepares to step down following elections next month, coincided with the first anniversary of Navalny's poisoning, an incident that strained Russia-Germany ties.
Britain and the United States imposed sanctions on Friday on men they said were Russian intelligence operatives responsible for the poisoning one year ago of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny. The two countries both targeted seven Russians with sanctions and also issued a joint statement warning Russia over chemical weapons.
In shift, Biden taps career diplomat, not politician, for ambassador to China
President Joe Biden plans to nominate veteran U.S. diplomat Nicholas Burns to serve as U.S. ambassador to China, the White House said on Friday, signaling the administration may be looking for the envoy to play a more central role in the increasingly fractious relations between the two global rivals.
The choice of Burns, a retired career foreign service officer who served as under secretary of state between 2005 and 2008, marks a shift for the role of the ambassador to Beijing, the ranks of which over the past decade have been filled by former politicians, not seasoned diplomats.
Canada would consider taking in additional Afghan refugees on behalf of the United States or other allies if asked to do so, Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino said on Friday. "We should keep the door open to all possibilities," Mendicino said in an interview.
When armed members of the Afghan Taliban knocked on the door of their Kabul apartment, the family of 16 inside had crammed into the bathroom, turned off the lights and mobile phones and covered the children's mouths to keep them quiet. They did not know what to expect, but did not want to take any risks. Two family members had already been killed in recent years and they had watched the wave of assassinations across Afghanistan over the last 12 months that the ousted Afghan government blamed on Taliban insurgents.
Damaged roads hinder aid reaching remote areas of Haiti quake zone
Damaged or impassable roads hindered efforts on Friday to deliver aid to remote parts of Haiti devastated by an earthquake last weekend that killed more than 2,000 people as hopes of finding those still missing faded. Landslides and cracks in the tarmac on the main inland mountain road between the southwestern city of Les Cayes and Jeremie to its northwest, two of the hardest hit urban areas, made it harder to dispatch aid to farming communities short on food and drinkable water. The route was littered with boulders and the occasional stranded truck, according to a Reuters reporter.
U.S. says a dozen countries to let Kabul evacuation flights transit
The U.S. government said on Friday that a dozen countries, from Europe to the Middle East and Central Asia, will allow Americans and others evacuated from Kabul to transit their territory as it steps up its evacuation efforts from Afghanistan. State Department spokesperson Ned Price said Bahrain, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Qatar, Tajikistan, Turkey, the UAE, the United Kingdom and Uzbekistan had already begun or will soon begin transiting Americans, or in some circumstances others, through their territories.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)