AP News Digest 2 p.m.

Via AP news wire
Sunday 24 October 2021 19:02 BST
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Here are the AP’s latest coverage plans, top stories and promotable content. All times EDT. For up-to-the minute information on AP’s coverage, visit Coverage Plan at https://newsroom.ap.org.




VIRUS OUTBREAK — A team of young scientists in South Africa is assembling the equipment needed to reverse engineer Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine. The scientists are effectively making an end run around an industry that has vastly prioritized rich countries over poor in vaccine sales and manufacturing. By Lori Hinnant, Maria Cheng and Andrew Meldrum. SENT: 1,270 words, photos.

BIDEN-BUDGET — President Joe Biden meets with two key senators as Democrats drive toward a deal on their long-stalled package of social and environmental initiatives. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi expects an agreement on the framework and a vote on a companion public works bill by week’s end an Oct. 31 deadline line. By Hope Yen. SENT: 780 words, photos. UPCOMING: 800 words, photos by 3 p.m.

PROP FIREARM-DIGITAL GUNSHOTS — With computer-generated imagery, it seems the sky’s the limit in the magic Hollywood can produce: elaborate dystopian universes. Trips to outer space, for those neither astronauts nor billionaires. But as a shocked and saddened industry was reminded this week, many productions still use guns — real guns — when filming. And despite rules and regulations, people can get killed, as happened last week when Alec Baldwin fatally shot cinematographer Halyna Hutchins after he was handed a weapon and told it was safe. By Jocelyn Noveck. SENT: 970 words, photos. With PROP FIREARM-MOVIE SET — An assistant director who authorities say unwittingly handed actor Alec Baldwin the prop gun that killed a cinematographer on a film set was the subject of a safety complaint on a previous production. SENT: 510 words, photos.

RACE-BLIND REDISTRICTING — After lawsuits alleging racial gerrymandering, Republicans drawing new legislative maps in Texas, Ohio and North Carolina say they won't use racial or partisan data in the process. Still, the political maps they're proposing would tilt heavily toward their party. By Bryan Anderson and Nicholas Riccardi. SENT: 1,110 words, photos.

FRANCE-SEXUAL ABUSE-POLICE — Thousands of French women have denounced in a new online campaign the shocking response of police officers victim-blaming them or mishandling their complaints as they were reporting sexual abuse. The hashtag #DoublePeine (#DoubleSentencing) was launched last month by Anna Toumazoff, indignant after learning what happened to a 19-year-old woman who filed a rape complaint in the southern city of Montpellier: The police officer asked her using graphic terms whether she experienced pleasure during the rape. The hashtag quickly went viral, with women describing similar experiences in Montpellier and other police stations across France. By Sylvie Corbet and Arno Pedram. SENT: 960 words, photos. This is the Monday Spotlight

METAVERSE EXPLAINER — The term metaverse seems to be everywhere. Facebook is hiring thousands of engineers in Europe to work on it, while video game companies are outlining their long-term visions for what some consider the next big thing on the internet. Essentially, it's a world of endless, interconnected virtual communities where people can meet, work and play. Analysts also worry about Facebook trying to lead the way into a virtual world that could require even more personal data and offer greater potential for abuse and misinformation. By Kelvin Chan and Matt O’Brien. SENT: 1,110 words, photos.




MEXICO-TROPICAL-WEATHER — Hurricane Rick heads toward Mexico’s Pacific coast. SENT: 180 words.

TAIWAN-EARTHQUAKE — Taiwan shaken by 6.5-magnitude quake, woman hurt by rockfall. SENT: 120 words, photo.

INDIANA-CONGRESSMAN-TWITTER-SUSPENSION — Twitter suspends Indiana Rep. Jim Banks’ official account after removing a post about a transgender Biden administration official. SENT: 200 words.

PICASSO AUCTION-VEGAS — Picasso artworks auctioned for combined $109M in Las Vegas. SENT: 280 words, photos.

REL-ORTHODOX PATRIARCH — Orthodox patriarch hospitalized at start of 12-day US visit. SENT: 430 words, photo.

OBIT-JAY-BLACK — Jay Black, singer for Jay and the Americans, dies at 82. SENT: 240 words.




FLORIDA-SURGEON-GENERAL-NO-MASK — Florida’s top health official was asked to leave a meeting after refusing to wear a mask at the office of a state senator who told him she had a serious medical condition, officials have confirmed. SENT: 620 words, photo.

MUSIC-ED-SHEERAN-COVID — Ed Sheeran has COVID, will do performances from home. SENT: 140 words, photo.




BIDEN--WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL — White House counsel Dana Remus made a lasting impression on her colleagues with her perpetual calm amid the chaos following last year’s election as Donald Trump sought to challenge the legitimacy of Joe Biden’s victory. But her toughest task might lie ahead. She’s guiding Biden as the White House backs the effort to investigate and hold accountable those involved in the Jan. 6 insurrection at the Capitol. But she also wants to avoid setting a precedent that could weaken the office of the presidency. SENT: 1,170 words, photos.




FACEBOOK-PAPERS-INDIA-MISINFORMATION — Facebook in India has been selective in curbing hate speech, misinformation and inflammatory posts, particularly anti-Muslim content, according to leaked documents obtained by The Associated Press, even as its own employees cast doubt over the company’s motivations and interests. SENT: 1,860 words, photos. An abridged version of 960 words is available.

MEXICO-MIGRANT-MARCH — A group of about 2,000 mainly Central American migrants continued their mass exodus from the southern Mexico city of Tapachula. SENT: 420 words, photos.

KOREAS-TENSIONS — A senior U.S. diplomat urged North Korea to refrain from additional missile tests and resume nuclear diplomacy, days after the North fired off its first underwater-launched ballistic missile in two years. SENT: 480 words, photos.

BRITAIN-IRAN — The husband of U.K. charity worker Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, who has been detained for more than five years in Iran, has gone on a hunger strike again after a court decided she has to spend another year in prison. SENT: 350 words, photo.

REL-MIGRATION-VATICAN-POPE — Pope Francis made an impassioned plea to end the practice of returning migrants rescued at sea to Libya and other unsafe countries where they suffer “inhumane violence.” SENT: 750 words, photos.

SUDAN-POLITICAL TENSIONS — Pro-military protesters briefly blocked major roads and bridges in Sudan’s capital amid growing tensions between the generals and the pro-democracy movement that fueled the uprising against autocratic former president Omar al-Bashir. SENT: 540 words, photo.

PAKISTAN-ISLAMIST RALLY — A radical Islamist party agreed Sunday to suspend for three days its march of thousands toward the capital Islamabad after Pakistan agreed to drop pending charges against the party’s leader. SENT: 370 words, photos.

ISRAEL-SETTLEMENTS — A West Bank settlement watchdog group says Israel is expected to move forward this week with thousands of new homes for Jewish settlers in the occupied territory. SENT: 260 words, photo.

MEXICO-TROPICAL WEATHER — Hurricane Rick is headed for Mexico’s southern Pacific coast and is forecast to reach land by Monday. SENT: 180 words.

MOROCCO-SUFIS-PHOTO-GALLERY — Followers of a Sufi religious order convened on a Moroccan village near the city of Nador for the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad in the first such gathering since the pandemic. SENT: 450 words, photos.




CALIFORNIA-STORMS — A powerful storm roared ashore in Northern California, flooding highways, toppling trees and causing mud flows in areas burned bare by recent fires as forecasters predict record-breaking rainfall. SENT: 490 words, photos.

DRAG-RACE-CRASH — A driver lost control during a Texas drag racing event on an airport runway and slammed into a crowd of spectators, killing two children and injuring eight other people, authorities said. SENT: 350 words, photo.

NOEM-DAUGHTER MEETING-EXPLAINER — South Dakota lawmakers will be taking a look at a state agency that has been at the center of questions about whether Gov. Kristi Noem used her influence to aid her daughter’s application for a real estate appraiser license. SENT: 860 words, photo.

AFGHANISTAN-BOMBING-US-TROOPS-WYOMING — Dozens of U.S. fellow Marines joined hundreds of Wyoming residents to bid a final farewell at a memorial for Rylee McCollum, one of 13 U.S. servicemen killed in a suicide bombing as they guarded a gate at a chaotic Kabul, Afghanistan airport during the final U.S. evacuation from that country. SENT: 380 words, photo.




DUBAI-UNION PROPERTIES — Emirati prosecutors say they have launched a major investigation into Dubai-based real estate developer Union Properties, saying they would probe allegations the long-troubled firm committed fraud and other offenses while trying to claw its way out of debt. SENT: 590 words, photos.




FBC--T25-COLLEGE FOOTBALL POLL — Alabama inched up to No. 3 in The Associated Press college football behind top-ranked Georgia and No. 2 Cincinnati. The Bulldogs are a unanimous No. 1 for the third straight week in the AP Top 25 presented by Regions Bank and the Bearcats remain second. SENT: 580 words, photos.

BBO--WORLD SERIES PREVIEW — When Freddie Freeman and the Atlanta Braves meet Jose Altuve and the Houston Astros, it will be a World Series that's been six decades in the making. These longtime National League rivals began playing in 1962 and met more than 700 times before the Astros moved to the American League in 2013. SENT: 900 words, photos.




FILM-BOX OFFICE — Denis Villeneuve’s “Dune” debuted with $40.1 million in ticket sales in its opening weekend in North America, drawing moviegoers to see the thundering sci-fi epic on the big screen despite it also being available in homes. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 3 p.m.




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