AP News Digest 7 a.m.

Via AP news wire
Monday 18 October 2021 11:59
Haiti US Kidnapped Missionaries
Haiti US Kidnapped Missionaries

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.

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TOP STORIES

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HAITI-US KIDNAPPED MISSIONARIES— U.S. officials are working with Haitian authorities to try to secure the release of 12 adults and five children with a U.S.-based missionary group who were abducted by a gang notorious for killings, kidnappings and extortion. Police say the group was snatched by the 400 Mawozo gang on Saturday. As authorities seek the release of the group, local unions and other organizations expect to launch a strike Monday to protest Haiti’s worsening lack of security. The Western Hemisphere’s poorest nation is again struggling with a spike in gang-related kidnappings and other crimes. By Dánica Coto and Evans Sanon. SENT: 750 words, photos.

BIDEN-CRITICAL WEEKS — President Joe Biden is entering a crucial two weeks for his ambitious agenda. He’s racing to conclude contentious congressional negotiations ahead of both domestic deadlines and a chance to showcase his administration’s accomplishments on the world stage. By Jonathan Lemire and Zeke Miller. SENT: 1,070 words, photos.

AHMAUD ARBERY-GEORGIA TRIAL – Hundreds of people have been ordered to report for jury duty in Georgia for what could be a long, laborious effort to find jurors to hear the trial of three white men charged with fatally shooting Ahmaud Arbery. The slaying of the 25-year-old Black man in 2020 sparked a national outcry fueled by graphic video of the shooting. By Russ Bynum. SENT: 610 words, photos.

VIRUS OUTBREAK-JAPAN-ACCIDENTAL SUCCESS – Almost overnight, Japan is a stunning, and somewhat mysterious, coronavirus success story. Daily new COVID-19 cases have plummeted after a mid-August peak that nearly reached 6,000 in Tokyo, with caseloads in the densely populated capital now below 100, an 11-month low. Possible factors include, after a long delay, a remarkable and rapid vaccination campaign and a shared practice, well before the pandemic, of wearing masks. But experts worry that without knowing what exactly helped the nation cut cases so drastically, Japan will be in store for another devastating wave like this summer. By Mari Yamaguchi. SENT: 1,100words, photos.

PAKISTAN-TALIBAN FALLOUT — The Taliban win in Afghanistan is giving a boost to militants in neighboring Pakistan. The Pakistani Taliban, known as the TTP, have become emboldened in tribal areas along the border with Afghanistan. They hope to regain control in these areas that they lost in an offensive by the Pakistani military nearly seven years ago. Taliban rule in Afghanistan also fuels the broader, toxic mix of radical religious parties in Pakistan, where polls show wide support for a Taliban-style government. By Kathy Gannon. SENT: 930 words, photos.

BRITAIN-LAWMAKER KILLED — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will lead tributes in Parliament to David Amess a Conservative lawmaker stabbed to death as he met constituents. The attack shocked Britain, and it has fuelled concern about politicians’ safety and the level of vitriol directed at them. By Jill Lawless. SENT:480 words, photos.

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TRENDING NEWS

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FACEBOOK EUROPE-METAVERSE — Facebook says it plans to hire 10,000 workers in the European Union over the next five years to work on a new computing platform. SENT: 400 words.

EUROPE VACCINES — The European Union says it now has exported over 1 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccines to the rest of the world. EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen says the exports have been sent to over 150 nations, making the 27-member bloc the largest exporter of the vaccines in the world. SENT: 140 words.

PEOPLE-KOURTNEY KARDASHIAN — A day at the beach turned into a proposal for Kourtney Kardashian who is now engaged to Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker. Kardashian posted two photos on Instagram of the proposal with the caption “forever.” SENT: 130 words, photos.

GRAMBLING STATE SHOOTING — Officials say one person was fatally shot and seven others were wounded at Grambling State University in the second deadly shooting at the Louisiana school within four days. SENT: 200 words.

OBIT-BETTY LYNN — Betty Lynn, who was best known as Barney Fife’s sweetheart Thelma Lou on “The Andy Griffith Show,” has died at the age of 95. SENT: 400 words, photos.

KUWAIT FIRE — Kuwait’s state-owned oil company says a fire has erupted at a major oil refinery and no casualties were immediately reported. SENT: 160 words.

TAIWAN-FOXCONN-ELECTRIC CARS — The Taiwanese company that manufactures smartphones for Apple Inc. and other global brands says it plans to make electric cars for auto brands under a similar contract model. SENT: 190 words.

RONNIE-TUTT-OBIT — Ronnie Tutt, a legendary drummer who spent years playing alongside Elvis Presley and teamed up with other superstars ranging from Johnny Cash to Stevie Nicks, has died. He was 83. SENT: 490 words.

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MORE ON THE VIRUS OUTBREAK

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VIRUS OUTBREAK-AUSTRALIA — Australia’s Queensland state plans to open to vaccinated travelers, ending the status it has enjoyed throughout the pandemic of being virtually free of COVID-19. Tight border controls helped make Queensland and Western Australia among the most successful states in keeping out COVID-19. SENT: 270 words, photo.

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WASHINGTON

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RAIMONDO’S MISSION — Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo is on a mission to save American jobs — one computer chip at a time. As President Biden’s de facto tech minister, Raimondo is tasked with ensuring the United States will be the world leader in computer chips. By Josh Boak. SENT: 1,280 words, photos.

WESTERN DROUGHT-HARRIS — Vice President Kamala Harris highlights the problems caused by Western drought as she visits Lake Mead in Nevada and makes the case for the Biden administration’s infrastructure and climate change proposals that have stalled in Congress. SENT: 490 words, photos.

JILL BIDEN — First lady Jill Biden speaks at a 50th anniversary celebration for the pastor of a Baptist church in South Carolina. The pastor’s wife is the first lady’s “prayer partner” who helped Biden regain her faith after her son Beau Biden died of brain cancer. SENT: 650 words, photo.

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NATIONAL

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BILL CLINTON-HOSPITALIZED — Bill Clinton has returned to his home in New York to continue recovering from an infection that left him in treatment for six days at a Southern California hospital. The 75-year-old former president left University of California Irvine Medical Center on Sunday morning and arrived at his home in Chappaqua, New York, later in the day. By Haven Daley. SENT: 510 words, photos, video.

OBIT-MEGAN RICE — Megan Rice, a nun and Catholic peace activist who spent two years in federal prison while in her 80s after breaking into a government security complex to protest nuclear weapons, has died. She was 91. Rice died of congestive heart failure Oct. 10 at Holy Child Center in Rosemont, Pennsylvania. SENT: 660 words, photos.

CALIFORNIA WILDFIRES — Officials say fire crews made significant progress overnight against a wildfire burning for nearly a week in Southern California coastal mountains. More than 1,600 firefighters battling the blaze in the Santa Ynez Mountains west of Santa Barbara on land and by air were able to stop its forward growth. Federal officials said Sunday the blaze was 78% contained. SENT: 310 words, photos.

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INTERNATIONAL

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POLAND-HOLOCAUST GRAVES — During the German occupation of Poland during World War II, the Germans imprisoned Jews in ghettoes and murdered them in death camps like Auschwitz, Treblinka and Sobibor. But they also shot them in fields and forests near their homes, leaving behind mass graves across Poland. Those graves have been coming to light in recent years and the Jewish community and activists have been working to ensure that the graves are officially marked. SENT: 1,110 words, photos.

AUSTRALIA CLIMATE CHANGE — The Australian government has begun its legal challenge to a judge’s landmark decision that the administration has a duty of care to prevent future climate change. The Federal Court battle over a proposed coal mine expansion comes as Prime Minister Scott Morrison battles to persuade his conservative government colleagues to commit to a net zero emissions target for Australia by 2050. SENT: 580 words.

WORLD COURT-AZERBAIJAN-ARMENIA — Azerbaijan’s deputy foreign minister accused Armenia of “ethnic cleansing” and continuing to lay landmines in Nagorno-Karabakh even after a cease-fire ended a six-week war in the disputed region late last year, as a second case related to the conflict opened at the United Nations’ top court. By Mike Corder SENT: 400 words, photos.

NETHERLANDS-JOURNALIST SHOT — The trial is set to open of two men charged with murder in the killing of Dutch crime reporter Peter R. de Vries. The journalist was gunned down in the center of Amsterdam on July 6 in a brazen attack that sent shockwaves through the Netherlands. SENT: 300 words, photos.

INDONESIA-AUSTRALIA SUBMARINE — The foreign ministers of Malaysia and Indonesia are concerned that Australia’s nuclear-powered submarines may increase the rivalry of major powers in Southeast Asia. Australia will build at least eight nuclear-powered submarines using U.S. expertise, while dumping a contract with France for diesel-electric subs. SENT: 300 words.

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BUSINESS

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CHINA ECONOMY — China’s economic growth sank in the last quarter as a slowdown in construction and curbs on energy use weighed on its recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. Government data show the world’s second-largest economy grew by 4.9% over a year earlier in July-September, down from the previous quarter’s 7.9%. SENT: 750 words, photos.

BRITAIN-FORD — Ford Motor Co. plans to spend up to 230 million pounds to turn a transmission factory in northwest England into a plant that will make electric power units for cars and trucks sold throughout Europe. SENT: 165 words, photos.

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ARTS/ENTERTAINMENT

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FILM-BOX OFFICE — “Halloween Kills” may be available to watch at home, but the latest installment in the Michael Myers saga is making a killing at the North American box office in its first weekend in theaters. The David Gordon Green-directed horror scared up $50.4 million from 3,705 locations, according to studio estimates. SENT: 730 words, photos.

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SPORTS

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GREECE FLAME LIGHTING — Three activists protesting human rights abuses in China have broken into the archaeological site where the flame lighting ceremony for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics is being held and ran toward the Temple of Hera holding a banner that read “No genocide games.” SENT: 635 words, photos.

BBN-NLCS-DODGERS-BRAVES -- The Braves won with a walk-off hit for the second night in a row when Eddie Rosario lined a two-out single off shortstop Corey Seager’s glove, giving Atlanta a 5-4 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Braves lead the NL Championship Series two games to none. SENT: 1,090 words, photos.

WNBA-FINALS — Allie Quigley scored 26 points and Candace Parker added 16 points, 13 rebounds and five assists to help Chicago win its first WNBA championship with a 80-74 victory over the Phoenix Mercury in Game 4. SENT: 950 words, photos.

ABUSE REPORTING-SPORTS — A former college basketball player has developed technology that allows athletes to anonymously report abuse, doping, harassment and other problems on their teams with a simple text. Among those using the technology are the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, the NFL Players Association and the National Women’s Soccer League. By National Writer Eddie Pells. SENT: 800 words, photos.

BKN—NBA AT 75 — It started in 1946 with 11 teams and 160 players. The shot clock was nearly a decade away, the 3-point line was a couple generations away. Buildings were smaller. So were the players. And it wasn’t even called the National Basketball Association. The NBA, 75 years ago, was different in almost every imaginable way. By Basketball Writer Tim Reynolds. UPCOMING: 1,000 words, photos by 4 a.m.

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HOW TO REACH US

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