Reuters World News Summary

Following is a summary of current world news briefs.

WHO changes to U.N. Syria memo risk stoking Trump-fueled criticism

Aid groups working with the United Nations want the Security Council to urgently allow an Iraq border crossing into Syria to be used again for deliveries to help combat the coronavirus pandemic, according to a draft World Health Organization memo seen by the 15-member U.N. Security Council. But an updated version of the memo, dated Tuesday, removed the direct appeal for the Al Yarubiyah crossing to be reopened nearly four months after its use for U.N. operations was shut down by opposition from Russia and China. The WHO did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Flypast and promotion for UK fund-raising hero 'Colonel' Tom as he turns 100

British World War Two veteran Captain Tom Moore, who has become a national hero after raising almost 30 million pounds for the health service, celebrates his 100th birthday on Thursday with an honorary promotion and two military flypasts. Moore has raised 29.4 million pounds ($36.5 million) for charities that help front-line National Health Service staff by completing laps of his garden with the help of a walking frame, having initially set out to raise just 1,000 pounds.

Pompeo says no sight of North Korea's Kim, real risk of famine in country

The United States has caught no sight of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and is watching reports about his health, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Wednesday, adding there was a real risk of famine in the country amid the coronavirus outbreak. North Korean media has not reported on Kim's whereabouts since he presided over a meeting on April 11, provoking speculation about his health and raising concerns about instability in the nuclear-armed country that could affect other North Asian countries and the United States.

Small protests break out in Lebanese cities in third night of unrest

Small protests fueled by worsening economic conditions in Lebanon broke out across several cities late on Wednesday, marking a third night of unrest. Lebanon is in the throes of a deep economic crisis that has seen its currency lose more than half its value since October, soaring inflation, and spiraling unemployment.

Brazil's Bolsonaro withdraws name of family friend as top cop

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on Wednesday withdrew the name of a family friend he had picked to run the federal police, after a Supreme Court justice blocked an appointment that opponents said would allow him inappropriate influence over law enforcement. His decision to drop Alexandre Ramagem, who was director of the Brazilian intelligence agency Abin, was published in the government's official gazette.

Amazon city resorts to mass graves as Brazil COVID-19 deaths soar

Deaths from the coronavirus outbreak have piled up so fast in the Amazon rainforest's biggest city that the main cemetery is burying five coffins at a time in collective graves. Soon, the city may run out of coffins.

Britain has Europe's second highest COVID-19 death toll, new figures show

Britain now has Europe's second highest official COVID-19 death toll with more than 26,000, according to figures published on Wednesday that raised questions about Prime Minister Boris Johnson's response to the outbreak. Some 26,097 people died across the United Kingdom after testing positive for COVID-19 as of April 28 at 1600 GMT, Public Health England (PHE) said, citing daily figures that included deaths outside of hospital settings for the first time.

Venezuelan migrants block Bogota road, demand ability to travel home

A large crowd of Venezuelan migrants held up traffic on a Bogota highway on Wednesday, demanding to be allowed to leave Colombia and return to Venezuela. Altogether, some 500 migrants arrived near the toll booths that mark the northern border of Bogota on Tuesday afternoon.

Irish government talks may drift into June: Fianna Fail leader

The leader of one of the parties negotiating to form a new Irish government raised the prospect on Wednesday of talks drifting well into June, extending a months-long deadlock that has been overshadowed by the coronavirus pandemic. Rivals Fianna Fail and Fine Gael struck an initial agreement two weeks ago to govern together for the first time but need the support of at least one smaller party or eight independent lawmakers to control the fractured parliament.

Two dozen people deported to Colombia on U.S. flight found to have coronavirus: sources

About two dozen migrants deported from the United States on a flight to Colombia last month have since tested positive for the new coronavirus, two people familiar with the matter said, adding to worries that U.S. deportations could be spreading the disease. Of more than 60 migrants deported by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE) on a March 30 flight from the United States, approximately 24 have tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, the sources said.