Xinhua world news summary at 0030 GMT, Jan. 4

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UNITED NATIONS -- The UN Security Council on Thursday condemned the terrorist attack that took place at security checkpoints in northern Sar-e-Pul Province and Balkh Province, Afghanistan, on Dec. 31, 2018.

Targeting the Afghan National Defence and Security Forces, the Taliban militants' attack killed at least 27 members of security forces and injured 20 members of security forces. (UN-Afghanistan-Terrorist Attack)

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WASHINGTON -- Representative Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat, was elected the new speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Thursday, the first day of a new, divided Congress.

Pelosi, 78, is the only woman who has held the office before and is among a few elected officials to return to the post. She was the House speaker from 2007 to 2011 when her Democratic Party controlled the lower chamber. (US-Congress-Leadership)

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LAGOS -- At least five crew members on board the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) Mi-35M helicopter that crashed in combat on Wednesday in restive northeast state of Borno are dead, a top NAF official said Thursday.

The helicopter crashed while providing close air support to troops of 145 Battalion in Damasak area of the state. (Nigeria-Helicopter Crash)

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MOSCOW -- The search and rescue operation has been completed at the site of a residential gas explosion in Russia, which killed 39 people, the Russian Emergency Ministry said Thursday.

"We removed the last body, and we guarantee that there are no more dead people in the building. Therefore, the search and rescue operation ends and goes into the engineering and construction stage," First Deputy Emergency Minister Alexander Chupriyan said, according to a statement published at the ministry's website. (Russia-Explosion-Rescue Operation) Enditem

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