Hello, I'm Neil Nunes with the BBC news.
Voters in the Central African Republic are finally due to cast their ballots today in presidential and parliamentary elections. Thirty candidates are vying to become president to replace the current interim leader. Tomi Oladipo has this report.
The elections in CAR have already been postponed four times because of problems of security and planning. But the international community is keen to see an elected government take office before the term of the present interim administration ends in March next year. The hope is that this process will pave the way for lasting peace in the country. Earlier this month, there was a low turnout as voters have approved a new constitution in an exercise marred by violence. The militia group which led the country into turmoil in the first place has not been disarmed and still pose a major threat.The task of ensuring a peaceful vote lies with troops from United Nations and France even though they've so far failed to stabilize the country.
The governor of the US state of Missouri has warned residents that river levels are still rising after four days of flooding left 13 people dead. Jay Nixon says he has instructed the Nation Guard to secure evacuated areas. It's very clear that Missouri is in the midst of a very historic and dangerous flooding event. The amount of rain we received, in some places an excess of a flood, has caused river levels not only to rise rapidly but to go to places they've never been before. All the weekend, Missouri experienced widespread and deadly flash flooding and just this morning, we were informed of an additional three flood related deaths. This brings the total number of fatalities in this storm to 13, 12 of which were caused by vehicles being swept from flooded roadways.
The former Republican governor of New York George Pataki has withdrawn his candidacy for the presidency. Mr. Pataki has failed to make any impact in the polls. Well, tonight is the end of my journey for the White House as I suspend my campaign for president. I'm confident we can elect the right person some who will bring us together and understands that politicians including the president must be the people's server. Mr. Pataki was New York governor at the time of the 9·11 attacks. The front runner in the race for the Republican presidential nomination Donald Trump says he aims to spend 2 million dollars a week on campaign advertising. Mr. Trump said he would outspend his Republican rivals who've also been raising funds for the party primaries in February.
Hillary Clinton who is leading the race for the Democratic nomination to run for US president has warned that Islamic State militants are committing genocide against religious minorities in the Middle East. Responding to a question at a town hall meeting in New Hampshire, Ms. Clinton described IS attacks on Iraqi Yazidi and other groups as genocide.
World news from BBC.
State media in China say eight miners trapped for five days after a mine caved in have been found alive. Reports say the rescuers have not yet been able to free the survivors but have made contact and sent in supplies. The gypsum mine collapsed on Christmas Day.
Newly released government documents show that the British prime minister Margaret Thatcher was in effect overruled by her cabinet over the handling of the AIDS crisis in 1986. She repeatedly queried the explicit language of AIDS advertisements and leaflets fearing it would alarm teenagers and their parents.Nick Higham reports.
The first AIDS cases were diagnosed in the UK in 1981. Five years later, the government was facing a possible epidemic of an incurable and fatal disease. It responded with a huge public awareness campaign. Files released today at the national archives in Kew showed Ms. Thatcher was alarmed. On one memo about what were called explicit and distasteful advertisements about AIDS, she scribbled Do we have to do the section on risky sex? I should have thought it could do immense harm if our young teenagers were to read it. But her ministers repeatedly ignored her reservations.
Police in Israel have arrested four Jewish men allegedly caught on video celebrating the murder of a Palestinian toddler in a firebomb attack in the occupied West Bank. In the video which has gone viral, a group of gun-waving extremists are seen dancing and singing. One man repeatedly stabs a photo of the toddler who was killed along with his parents in an attack blamed on Jewish settlers.
Officials in California have ended a day long standoff with a half-ton elephant seal who had been blocking traffic on a state highway. Marine mammal specialist used horns and kayak paddles to try to encourage the animal back into the water. The seal made several attempts to cross the road before a vet struck her with a pole mounted syringe containing tranquilizer.