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News Wrap: U.S. soldiers disciplined for accidental Afghan hospital bombing

In our news wrap Thursday, 16 U.S. military personnel, including a general, reportedly received administrative punishments for the mistaken bombing of a hospital in Afghanistan last year that killed 42. Also, Vice President Joe Biden made an unannounced visit to Iraq, hoping to resolve the political gridlock and corruption that have paralyzed the government’s efforts to combat the Islamic State.

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  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    Good evening. I'm Judy Woodruff.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    And I'm Hari Sreenivasan.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    On the "NewsHour" tonight: In Syria's rebel-held city of Aleppo, at least 27 are dead after an airstrike that hit a Doctors Without Borders hospital, further threatening a fragile cease-fire.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    Also ahead this Thursday: As the presidential primaries enter the final stretch, we look at the race for delegates and preview next week's primary in Indiana.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    And backlash in North Carolina — how the new state law requiring people to use bathrooms of their birth gender has set off a business boycott.

  • MIKE MOORE, Industry Consultant:

    Our Series A funding is several million dollars, and that money could be here in North Carolina. And we made a decision it's going to Florida.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    All that and more on tonight's "PBS NewsHour."

    (BREAK)

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    In the day's other news: There's word that 16 U.S. military personnel, including a general, have been disciplined over the mistaken bombing of a hospital in Afghanistan. The facility in the city of Kunduz was also run by Doctors Without Borders. The airstrike last year left 42 people dead.

    U.S. officials say the service members received administrative punishments, but will not face criminal charges. A full Pentagon report is expected tomorrow.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    Vice President Biden made an unannounced visit to Iraq today, hoping to resolve a political crisis. He touched down in Baghdad on a mission to urge Iraqi leaders to set aside their differences, and focus on fighting Islamic State militants. The country's government has been paralyzed for weeks over corruption and demands for sweeping reforms.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    North Korea has failed again in a bid to launch intermediate-range missiles. South Korean officials reported two attempts today. A similar launch earlier this month also failed. The weapons were fired from near Wonsan, and have the range to reach U.S. bases in Asia and the Pacific.

    A United Nations spokesman called today for the launches to stop. And Chinese President Xi Jinping said his country will not permit war or chaos on the Korean Peninsula.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    President Xi's government is moving to crack down on foreign nongovernmental organizations with operations inside China. A law adopted today says they must never endanger Chinese unity, and will now be closely monitored by police. It also bans them from recruiting or fund-raising.

    Chinese officials defended the restrictions at a news conference in Beijing.

    HAO YUNHONG, Director of Foreign NGO Management (through interpreter): There are a minority of foreign NGOs, that through the means of funds and some methods, will manage to harm China's national security interests and some other illegal criminal activity. In this way, strengthening control including handling this illegal contact, is something that we should also do.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    U.S. and European officials have criticized the law as the latest move in a growing crackdown by the ruling Communist Party.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    Volkswagen has announced it's setting aside nearly $9 billion to buy back or repair diesel-powered vehicles that cheated on emissions tests. Part of the money would cover a buy-back deal for diesel owners in the U.S. It could affect up to 500,000 cars and trucks.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    A rout in tech stocks carried away Wall Street today. It began earlier this week when Apple reported its first revenue decline in 13 years. The Dow Jones industrial average lost 210 points to close at 17830. The Nasdaq fell nearly 58 points, and the S&P 500 gave up 19.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    In Australia, new statistics show that strict gun control measures have led to a major decline in gun murders. There were 35 in 2014. That was down nearly two-thirds from 1996, even though the population rose sharply during that period. Australia tightened its laws after a mass shooting 20 years ago today that left 35 dead in Tasmania.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    And in Utah's Arches National Park, the face of one of America's national treasures has been vandalized, maybe permanently. The etchings span five to six feet across a famous red rock arch, and may be too deeply cut to remove.

    The park's superintendent says graffiti and other vandalism is a growing problem.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    Still to come on the "NewsHour": the rising toll, as leaders seek a peace deal in Syria; calculating the delegate math ahead of the last 10 presidential primaries; an economic backlash against North Carolina's LGBT bathroom law; and much more.

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