Reuters World News Summary

Following is a summary of current world news briefs.

Tears and tributes as leaders, supporters bid farewell to Zimbabwe's Mugabe

Zimbabwe's founder Robert Mugabe was honored as an icon, principled leader and African intellectual giant at a state funeral on Saturday, after a week of disputes over his burial threatened to embarrass President Emmerson Mnangagwa. Mugabe led Zimbabwe for 37 years, from independence until he was ousted by the army in November 2017, by which time he was viewed by many at home and abroad as a power-obsessed autocrat who unleashed death squads, rigged elections and ruined the economy to keep control.

Hong Kong activist Joshua Wong seeks U.S. support for protests

Hong Kong pro-democracy activist Joshua Wong said on Saturday he was seeking the support of U.S. lawmakers for the demands of his fellow protesters who have led months of streets demonstrations, including a call for free elections. Wong, who spoke to Reuters in New York ahead of a planned visit to Washington, led Hong Kong's pro-democracy "Umbrella Movement" in 2014 and has been at the forefront of the latest protests, which started over a now-withdrawn extradition bill but grew into demands for greater democracy and independence from mainland China.

Attacks on Saudi oil facilities knock out half the kingdom's supply

Yemen's Iran-aligned Houthi group said it attacked two plants at the heart of Saudi Arabia's oil industry on Saturday, knocking out more than half the Kingdom's output, in a move expected to send oil prices soaring and increase tensions in the Middle East. The attacks will cut the kingdom's output by 5.7 million barrels per day (bpd), according to a statement from state-run oil company Saudi Aramco, or more than 5% of global oil supply.

UK's Johnson says 'huge' progress made on Northern Irish backstop

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said huge progress had been made on resolving the Northern Irish backstop sticking point in Brexit talks, in a newspaper interview in which he likened himself to the comic book character The Incredible Hulk. "There's a very, very good conversation going on about how to address the issues of the Northern Irish border. A huge amount of progress is being made," Johnson told the Mail on Sunday, adding that he was "very confident".

Hong Kong police break up scattered clashes between rival protesters

Baton-wielding Hong Kong police moved in to break up scuffles on Saturday between pro-China protesters and those denouncing perceived Chinese meddling in the Asian financial hub, the latest in months of sometimes violent clashes. The pro-China demonstrators chanted "Support the police" and "China, add oil" at a shopping mall, adapting a line used by anti-Hong Kong government protesters and loosely meaning: "China, keep your strength up".

Osama bin Laden's son Hamza killed in U.S. raid, Trump says

Hamza bin Laden, a son of slain al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and himself a notable figure in the militant group, was killed in a U.S. counterterrorism operation, President Donald Trump said on Saturday. In a statement issued by the White House, Trump said the operation took place in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region, but he offered no further details.

Trump floats possible defense treaty days ahead of Israeli elections

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Saturday he had spoken with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu about a possible mutual defense treaty between the two nations, a move that could bolster Netanyahu's re-election bid just days before Israelis go to the polls. "I had a call today with Prime Minister Netanyahu to discuss the possibility of moving forward with a Mutual Defense Treaty, between the United States and Israel, that would further anchor the tremendous alliance between our two countries," Trump said on Twitter.

Congo police detain former health minister in Ebola probe

A former Congolese health minister was taken into custody on Saturday over alleged mismanagement of funds for the country's response to the Ebola epidemic, police said. Oly Ilunga oversaw Democratic Republic of Congo's handling of the outbreak, the second deadliest in history, for nearly a year. He was stripped by the presidency of that responsibility in July and resigned from the government days later.

Snowden says he hopes France will grant him asylum

Former U.S spy agency contractor Edward Snowden hopes France will grant him asylum, according to a France Inter radio interview to be broadcast on Monday. In excerpts made available on the French radio station's Twitter account, Snowden says he would "love to see" French President Emmanuel Macron make a gesture enabling him to live in the country.

After U.S. court ruling, Honduran newlyweds among migrants clinging to asylum dream

Led by a dream of marrying on U.S. soil, a young Honduran couple traveled thousands of miles from their home in the port city of La Ceiba, narrowly escaping a kidnapping in Mexico before seeking asylum across the border in Texas. But the couple, Dexy Maldonado and Marvin Madrid, decided in the end to settle for a wedding in less than dream-like conditions.