Reuters World News Summary

Following is a summary of current world news briefs.

Malta government rejects murder pardon bid by businessman

The Malta government turned down on Friday a request by a prominent businessman for immunity from prosecution in connection with the 2017 killing of investigative reporter Daphne Caruana Galizia. Yorgen Fenech was arrested just over a week ago as he tried to leave the Mediterranean island aboard his luxury yacht and is considered to be a person of interest in the investigation.

No phones, scripted tweets: How Trump's Afghanistan trip was kept under wraps

Notorious for leaks and chastened by previous security lapses, the White House went to unusual lengths to keep President Donald Trump's Thanksgiving trip to Afghanistan under wraps, devising a cover story for his movements that included posting scripted tweets while he was in the air, administration officials said. On Thursday, Trump dropped in unannounced on troops at Afghanistan's Bagram military air base in his first trip to the country and only his second to a war zone during his presidency. He served soldiers a turkey dinner and posed for selfies, before telling reporters that the United States and Taliban hoped to resume peace talks.

Police shoot London killer dead, call stabbings a terrorist attack

British police on Friday shot dead a man wearing a fake suicide vest who stabbed two people to death in London and wounded three more before being wrestled to the ground by bystanders, in what the authorities called a terrorist attack. The attacker went on the rampage just before 2 p.m. (1400 GMT), targeting people at Fishmongers' Hall near London Bridge in the heart of the city's financial district - the scene of a deadly attack by Islamist militants two years ago.

Threats, arrests, targeted killings silence Iraqi dissidents

After armed men raided the home of Hussein Adel al-Madani and his wife Sara Talib last year, the Iraqi activists spent months of self-imposed exile in Turkey, changed address upon returning home and ceased participating in protests, according to two friends of the couple. But a day after anti-government demonstrations erupted in Baghdad in October, unidentified gunmen believed by activists to be working on behalf of Iran-backed militia shot the couple dead in their home in the southern city of Basra, said the friends and two security sources familiar with the incident. Sara was several months pregnant.

Three youths wounded in stabbing in The Hague, no indication now of terrorism

Three youths were wounded in a stabbing on a shopping street in The Hague early Friday evening, Dutch police said, adding that they were seeking a suspect. National broadcaster NOS said the attack could not immediately be attributed to terrorism.

Maltese businessman in court as journalist murder case deepens

A prominent Maltese businessman suspected of involvement in the killing of a journalist went to court on Friday and accused the prime minister's right-hand man of being implicated in the plot. Yorgen Fenech, who is on police bail, also asked the court in Valetta to order the removal of Inspector Keith Arnaud, the chief investigator in the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia.

China mixing military and science in Arctic push: Denmark

China's military is increasingly using scientific research in the Arctic as a way into the region, a Danish intelligence service said on Friday, as it warned of intensifying geopolitical rivalry in the Earth's freezing North. Disputes in the Arctic over global warming and access to minerals broke into the open in May when U.S. Secretary Mike Pompeo accused Russia of aggressive behaviour in the polar region and said China's actions must be watched closely.

British PM Johnson to Trump: keep out of UK election

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Friday it would be "best" if U.S. President Donald Trump does not get involved in Britain's election when he visits London for a NATO summit next week. Trump waded into the election in October by saying opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn would be "so bad" for Britain and that Johnson should agree on a pact with Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage.

Suriname President Bouterse convicted of murder for 1982 executions

A court in Suriname on Friday convicted President Desi Bouterse of murder for the execution of 15 opponents in 1982 following a coup to seize power, sentencing the man who has dominated the former Dutch colony's recent history to 20 years in prison. Opposition parties called for Bouterse, currently in China on an official visit, to step down. The military court that found him guilty has not yet ordered his arrest.

North Korea warns Japan's Abe may soon see real ballistic missile launch

North Korea's state media on Saturday lashed out at Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe as an "imbecile and political dwarf" for calling Pyongyang's latest test of a large multiple-rocket launcher a ballistic missile launch and warned he may see a real one in the near future. North Korea fired two short-range projectiles into the sea off its east coast on Thursday in a fourth test of its new "super-large multiple-rocker launcher," with its North Korean leader Kim Jong Un expressing "great satisfaction" over the latest test.