Last update: Wed, 25 May 2016 11pm

General News: World


Iraqi forces shelled Islamic State targets in Falluja on Tuesday, the second day of an assault to retake the militant stronghold just west of Baghdad, as international concern mounted for the security of civilians. Residents in the city, 50 km (30 miles) from the capital, reported sporadic shelling around the city centre, but said it was less intense than on Monday.
The Afghan Taliban are struggling to find a successor to slain chief Mullah Akhtar Mansour, militant sources told AFP Tuesday, with one saying the two main contenders have backed out of the leadership race. Mullah Yakoub, the son of Taliban founder Mullah Omar, and Sirajuddin Haqqani, an implacable foe of US forces, were seen as the two frontrunners for the job after Mansour was killed Saturday in a rare American drone strike deep inside Pakistan.
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Tuesday said he was disappointed most top world leaders had stayed away from the first humanitarian summit in Istanbul, saying concrete political action was now needed. The two-day World Humanitarian Summit wound up with announcements of a new children's fund seeking almost $4 billion (3.6 billion euros) to help educate the young in conflict and a "Grand Bargain" to streamline work between donors and aid groups.
Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades on Tuesday cancelled scheduled peace talks with the Turkish Cypriot leader over what he saw as an attempt to recognise the Turkish-held north of the divided island. The move came after Anastasiades snubbed a state dinner at the world humanitarian summit in Istanbul on Monday on discovering that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci was also invited.
Greek police on Tuesday moved hundreds of migrants out of the overcrowded camp of Idomeni, launching a major operation to clear up the squalid tent city where thousands fleeing war and poverty had lived for months. In an operation that began shortly after sunrise, Greek police said they had put more than 1,500 people on buses to newly opened camps near Greece's second city Thessaloniki, about 80 kilometres (50 miles) to the south.
British actor Burt Kwouk, best known for his role as Inspector Clouseau's manservant Cato Fong in the "Pink Panther" comedy films, died on Tuesday aged 85, his agent said. Born in northern England but raised in Shanghai in China, Kwouk's career began on British television in the 1950s and over the next six decades he had parts in some of its best-known shows most notably "Last of the Summer Wine" and 1980s war drama "Tenko".
A landslide in Myanmar's northern jade mining region has killed at least 12 people and many more are missing, officials said Tuesday, the latest deadly accident to hit the shadowy but lucrative industry. The bodies were recovered after a wall of unstable earth collapsed Monday night following heavy rain in the town of Hpakant in Kachin state, the centre of a multi-billion-dollar trade that feeds a huge demand for the precious stones from neighbouring China.