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VOA English Newscast: 2000 UTC December 16, 2015

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U. S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter addresses the U.S. troops at the Incirlik Air Base near Adana, Turkey, Dec. 15, 2015.
U. S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter addresses the U.S. troops at the Incirlik Air Base near Adana, Turkey, Dec. 15, 2015.

From Washington, this is VOA News.

I'm Dave DeForest reporting.

The U.S.-led coalition has a request for Iraq:

U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter has told Iraqi leaders they should accelerate their efforts to defeat the Islamic State group. Carter met with Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and Defense Minister Khaled al-Obaidi after making an unannounced visit Wednesday to Baghdad.

Turkish officials say four of their soldiers were wounded in a mortar attack on a base in northern Iraq. That is where Turkish troops are training Iraqi soldiers. Western media are reporting that Islamic State militants fired rockets on the Iraqi camp, near the city of Mosul.

Rebels and pro-government forces are accusing each other of violating a ceasefire in Yemen. However, the truce appears to be holding together for the most part.

The accusations included continued ground fighting, shelling by Houthi rebels and airstrikes by a Saudi-led coalition.

Opposition leaders in central Ethiopia say security forces have killed more than 40 people in recent weeks, amid protests against a government development plan.

Demonstrators began holding rallies late last month over a plan to expand the city limits of Addis Ababa, the capital. Critics in Ethiopia's Oromia region say the plan would displace farmers and rob the area of its autonomy.

The United States has called on Nigerian officials to investigate violence between army troops and a Shi'ite sect. The fighting has reportedly left hundreds of people dead.

The U.S. embassy in Abuja said Wednesday that the Nigerian government should 'quickly, and credibly and transparently' investigate the events... and hold to account any individuals found to have committed crimes.'

This is VOA News.

Words in This Newscast

accelerate - v. to cause to move faster; to speed up

mortar - n. a weapon that fires small bombs

amid - prep. in the middle of; surrounded by

rallies - n. demonstrations; protests

autonomy - n. independence or freedom; self-rule

sect - n. a group of individuals with different beliefs from those of a larger group, usually a religious group

credibly - adj. believable

transparently - adj. able to be seen through; easy to understand

to hold to account - expression. to hold responsible

committed - v. to carry out or enact

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