Following is a summary of current world news briefs.
Russia warns Syrian Kurdish YPG must pull back or face Turkish army
Russia warned Syrian Kurdish YPG forces on Wednesday they face further armed conflict with Turkey if they fail to comply with a Russian-Turkish accord calling for their withdrawal from the entire length of Syria's northeastern border with Turkey. Moscow's warning came shortly before Russian and Syrian security forces were due to start overseeing the removal of YPG fighters and weapons at least 30 km (19 miles) into Syria, under the deal struck by presidents Vladimir Putin and Tayyip Erdogan.
Thirst turns to anger as Australia's mighty river runs dry
Reduced to a string of stagnant mustard-colored pools, fouled in places with pesticide runoff and stinking with the rotting carcasses of cattle and fish, the Darling River is running dry. The parched earth of Australia's longest waterway, if tributaries are included, is in the grip of the continent's most severe drought in a century.
Facing protests, Lebanese leaders mull reshuffle: sources
Lebanese leaders are discussing a possible government reshuffle, sources said on Wednesday, to defuse unprecedented protests against the political elite that have paralyzed the country for a week. Lebanon's highest Christian Maronite authority and a prominent Druze politician threw their weight behind the groundswell for change, calling for qualified technocrats to be included in any government shake-up.
Chile sees first major organized labor strikes since president pledged social reforms
Students and trade unionists led marches through Santiago on Wednesday in the first formally organized demonstration against social inequality since Chilean President Sebastian Pinera pledged social reforms to try to quell days of rioting. Thousands of striking workers, including healthcare workers and teachers, sang and carried banners in the capital and other cities. The largely peaceful marches were monitored by police and soldiers.
Driver arrested after 39 found dead in truck near London
British police found the bodies of 39 people inside a truck at an industrial estate near London on Wednesday and said they had arrested the driver on suspicion of murder. The discovery of the bodies - 38 adults and one teenager - was made in the early hours after emergency services were alerted to people in a truck container on an industrial site in Grays, about 20 miles (32 km) east of central London.
North Korea's Kim Jong Un and Trump have 'special' relationship: KCNA
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump continue to have close relations and trust, with Kim calling the relationship "special," North Korea's state news agency KCNA said on Thursday. The statement comes after North Korea earlier this month broke off working-level talks with the United States in Sweden, pushing denuclearization negotiations back into limbo after what had been months of stalemate.
Divided over dictator, Spain to exhume Franco's remains
Spanish authorities will remove Francisco Franco's remains from a state mausoleum on Thursday, seeking to exorcise the ghost of a dictator whose legacy still divides the country more than four decades after his death. Amid tight security and in virtual secrecy, his coffin will be taken from the Valley of the Fallen and reburied in a private family vault, transported either by helicopter or, if bad weather intervenes, by guarded motorcade.
Chastened Trudeau to reach out to opponents after Canada election blow, rules out coalition
A chastened Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, whose grip on power was weakened after an election this week, said on Wednesday he would reach out to his opponents but ruled out any kind of coalition government. The ruling Liberals lost their parliamentary majority in Monday's vote and must now rely on other parties to govern. A top Trudeau ally lost his seat and the Liberals were wiped out in two western provinces, putting more strain on national unity.
EU keeps UK waiting on Brexit delay, Johnson gears for an election
EU member states on Wednesday delayed a decision on whether to grant Britain a three-month Brexit extension, while Prime Minister Boris Johnson said if the deadline is deferred to the end of January he would call an election by Christmas. Britain appears closer than ever to resolving its 3-1/2-year Brexit conundrum, after Johnson clinched a deal with the European Union on the terms of its exit last week and secured an early signal of support for it from parliament.
Ecuador's indigenous group says government talks on hold due to 'persecution'
Ecuador's indigenous movement said on Wednesday that it paused talks with President Lenin Moreno because of the government's "persecution" of the group's leaders since a halt to violent anti-austerity protests. Jaime Vargas, head of the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador, or CONAIE, said the group had entered the talks "in good faith," but an atmosphere of trust did not exist. "We cannot be at the table while they are pursuing us," Vargas told reporters.