Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

World Briefs

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

World Briefs

Article excerpt

Syrian Kurds flee Islamic State

Hundreds of Kurds fleeing Islamic State-held villages in northern Syria amid a wave of mass abductions have come under fire, with several killed or wounded, opposition activists and a Kurdish official said Saturday.

In eastern Syria, meanwhile, airstrikes on a village controlled by the extremist group have killed at least 30 people and wounded many others, opposition activists said.

Activist Omar Abu Leila, who is from the eastern city of Deir el- Zour but currently lives in Europe, said Saturday's airstrikes targeted a mosque in the village of Qourieh, killing at least 30 people. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says 46 people were killed in Qourieh, including children. It says 31 of the dead were civilians and the rest have not been identified yet.

Abu Leila said the airstrikes were carried out by Russian warplanes. Russia has denied targeting civilians.

China cuts contact with Taiwan liaison * Beijing said Saturday that it had cut off contact with the main Taiwan liaison body because of President Tsai Ing-wen's refusal to endorse the concept of a single Chinese nation, ratcheting up pressure on the new Taiwanese leader.

In a statement posted on the website of the Cabinet's Taiwan Affairs Office, spokesman An Fengshan said contacts between bodies responsible for ties had been suspended starting from Tsai's May 20 inauguration.

"Because the Taiwan side has been unable to confirm the '92 consensus that embodies the common political foundation of the one- China principle, the mechanism for contact and communication between the two sides has already been suspended," the statement quoted An as saying.

The '92 consensus refers to an arrangement made in 1992 under which both sides acknowledged the existence of a single Chinese nation comprising both Taiwan and the mainland. That understanding underpinned dialogue that allowed the two sides to build ties and partially overcome enmity stemming from their bitter split amid the Chinese civil war in 1949. …

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