Reuters World News Summary

Following is a summary of current world news briefs.

Exclusive: Baghdadi's aide was key to his capture - Iraqi intelligence sources

In their long hunt for Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, Iraqi intelligence teams secured a break in February 2018 after one of the Islamic State leader's top aides gave them information on how he escaped capture for so many years, said two Iraqi security officials. Baghdadi would sometimes hold strategy talks with his commanders in moving minibuses packed with vegetables in order to avoid detection, Ismael al-Ethawi told officials after he was arrested by Turkish authorities and handed to the Iraqis.

Hong Kong riot police gather ahead of harbor-front protest

Dozens of Hong Kong police in full riot gear gathered ahead of an unauthorized pro-democracy protest on Sunday in the harbor-front tourist district of Tsim Sha Tsui, fuelling expectations they were ready to stop the rally before it had even started. Police detained a couple of people as hundreds gathered in the autumn sunshine, some yelling profanities at the police, under the rallying cry of "fight police brutality and stand with Muslims, citizens and journalists".

Defying crackdown, thousands of Iraqis keep protesting

Thousands of Iraqi protesters stood fast in Baghdad's central Tahrir Square on Sunday, defying a bloody crackdown that killed scores over the weekend and an overnight raid by security forces seeking to disperse them. Young men had erected barricades on a bridge leading to the capital's fortified Green Zone against security forces who continued to lob tear gas canisters toward them. Medical and security sources said 77 people had been injured.

EU hopes to endorse Brexit delay to January 31 with earlier departure possible: sources

The 27 European Union countries that will remain after Brexit hope to agree on Monday to delay Britain's divorce until Jan.31 with an earlier departure possible should the factious UK parliament ratify their separation deal, sources said. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson last week reluctantly requested the three-month delay until the end of January, 2020, after the parliament's lower House of Commons refused to swiftly approve a new Brexit deal he had agreed with the bloc.

Bogota elects first woman mayor in Colombia regional vote

Voters in Colombia's capital Bogota elected a woman as mayor for the first time on Sunday in local and regional contests marked in some places by violence against candidates and the power of political clans. Left-wing Claudia Lopez, a former senator and vice-presidential candidate, won about 35% of the vote for Bogota mayor, widely considered the second-most important political post in Colombia after the presidency.

Argentine media call Fernandez election winner in worrying sign for Macri

Argentine media called the presidential election in favor of Alberto Fernandez soon after polls closed on Sunday, a worrying early sign for conservative incumbent Mauricio Macri who trailed far behind his challenger in pre-election polls. Local TV stations said that Fernandez had beaten Macri, and one said that he would win outright without the need for a second-round vote. Fernandez's party, which won an August primary election by a landslide, was also bullish.

Trump announces grisly death of Islamic State leader Baghdadi during U.S. raid

U.S. President Donald Trump on Sunday announced that Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi killed himself during a daring overnight raid by elite U.S. special operations forces in Syria, in a major victory as he fights a Democratic-led impeachment inquiry. Baghdadi died alongside three of his children by detonating an explosives-laden vest when he fled U.S. forces into a dead-end tunnel during the attack, which took place in the Idlib region in northwest Syria, the Republican president said in a televised address to the nation from the White House.

'Grass' or 'VIP'? How rural Vietnamese make treacherous journey to Europe

For Vietnamese seeking to embark on the treacherous journey to a new life in Europe, a key question can be: "Grass" or "VIP"? People-smugglers offer different levels of service at vastly different prices, anti-trafficking experts, migrants and their family members told Reuters.

Vietnam police take DNA from relatives of suspected truck victims

Police in Vietnam took hair and blood samples on Sunday to get DNA from relatives of people feared to be among the 39 who died in the back of a truck near London last week, their family members said. The bodies were found on Wednesday in a truck container in Grays, about 32 km (20 miles) east of central London and British police are still trying to establish the identity of victims who in many cases lacked identity documents.

Syrian Kurdish forces say leaving Turkish border area, Damascus welcomes move

The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) said on Sunday it had agreed to withdraw more than 30 km (19 miles) from the Turkish border, an announcement welcomed by Damascus which said Turkey should now end its "aggression" in northeast Syria. Turkey launched its cross-border offensive on Oct. 9 targeting Kurdish YPG forces in northeast Syria after President Donald Trump pulled U.S. troops out of the area.