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BC-AP News Digest 5:30 am

December 26, 2018

Here are the AP’s latest coverage plans, top stories and promotable content. All times EST. 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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GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN — Christmas has come and gone but the partial government shutdown is just getting started as Wednesday brings the first full business day after several government departments and agencies closed up over the weekend due to a budgetary stalemate between President Donald Trump and Congress. By Darlene Superville. SENT: 500 words, photos. WITH: TRUMP-BORDER WALL-FACT CHECK — President Trump’s claims on Christmas that he had awarded 115 miles of new border wall construction in Texas appear to confuse work that’s already funded and underway. By Nomaan Merchant. SENT: 550 words, photos.

INDONESIA-TSUNAMI — Indonesian authorities ask people near an island volcano to avoid the coast while eruptions and weather and sea conditions are monitored for tsunami risks. A tsunami last Saturday night killed 420 people and displaced thousands. By Niniek Karmini. SENT: 500 words, photos, video.

CHILD DEAD-BORDER — U.S. immigration authorities say an 8-year-old boy from Guatemala has died in government custody, the second immigrant child to die in detention this month. By Nomaan Merchant. SENT: 730 words, photo.

SYRIA-ISRAEL — Israeli warplanes flying over Lebanon fire missiles toward areas near the Syrian capital of Damascus, hitting an arms depot and wounding three soldiers, Syrian state media reports, saying most of the missiles were shot down by air defense units. SENT: 410 words. UPCOMING: Developing. WITH: SYRIA — Turkey says it is working with the United States to coordinate the withdrawal of American forces but remains “determined” to clear U.S.-allied Kurdish fighters from northeastern Syria. By Zeynep Bilginsoy. SENT: 600 words, photos.

KOREAS-DIPLOMACY — South Korean officials travel to North Korea by train to attend a groundbreaking ceremony for an aspirational project to modernize North Korean railways and roads and connect them with the South. SENT: 500 words, photo.

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WHAT WE’RE TALKING ABOUT

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VATICAN-CHRISTMAS — Pope Francis offers a Christmas wish for fraternity among people of different nations, cultures, faiths, races or ideas, describing the world’s differences as a richness, not a danger, and championing the rights of religious minorities. SENT: 500 words, photos.

BRITAIN-QUEEN’S CHRISTMAS — Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II wove personal reflections into her annual Christmas message, offering the customary wishes for peace and saying she hoped she had attained a measure of wisdom during her 92 years. SENT: 520 words, photos.

WASHINGTON’S CROSSING — High water forces cancellation of the annual reenactment of George Washington’s daring 1776 crossing of the Delaware River on Christmas Day, but related events still go on at shoreline parks in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. SENT: 130 words, photos.

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WASHINGTON/POLITICS

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TRUMP-CHRISTMAS — A 7-year-old girl who talked to President Donald Trump on Christmas Eve still left out milk and cookies for Santa despite the president telling her it was “marginal” for a child of her age to still believe in the jolly old elf. SENT: 480 words, photos.

TRUMP-FACT CHECK — President Donald Trump is recycling familiar fictions concerning the Iran nuclear deal as he lashes out at a Republican senator who criticized him and a U.S. official who resigned in protest against Trump’s plan to pull troops from Syria. SENT: 690 words.

NSA-PHONE RECORDS-ACLU LAWSUIT — A civil rights group sues the U.S. government, saying it needs more information about surveillance of Americans’ phone and financial records to guide the public debate over what will happen when the law that regulates the scrutiny expires next year. SENT: 370 words.

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INTERNATIONAL

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AFGHANISTAN — The death toll from an attack in the Afghan capital climbs to 40. A suicide bomber detonates his explosives-laden vehicle outside the building Monday before at least three gunmen stormed in. SENT: 420 words, photos.

JAPAN-WHALING — Japan says it is leaving the International Whaling Commission to resume commercial hunts but says it will no longer go to the Antarctic to hunt. SENT: 130 words.

THAILAND-MARIJUANA LEGALIZATION — Thailand’s legislature agrees to amend the country’s drug law to allow the licensed medical use of marijuana, as well as kratom, a locally grown plant traditionally used as a stimulant and painkiller. SENT: 230 words.

SUDAN — Police use tear gas and fire in the air to disperse thousands of protesters attempting to march on the presidential palace to demand that Omar Bashir, Sudan’s president of 29 years, step down. By Hamza Hendawi. Photos. SENT: 930 words.

CONGO-ELECTION-VOTING MACHINES — As Congo hurtles toward Sunday’s already troubled election, the opposition on Tuesday urged mobile phone companies to disable SIM cards provided for voting machines as concerns grow about how the ballots of some 40 million people will be counted and shared. By Mathilde Boussion. SENT: 900 words, photos.

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BUSINESS/TECHNOLOGY

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JAPAN-NISSAN-KELLY — Nissan Motor Co. executive Greg Kelly has been released from detention in Japan after being granted bail over the alleged underreporting of his boss Carlos Ghosn’s pay. The latest on the Nissan-Ghosn pay scandal. By Mari Yamaguchi. Photos. SENT: 700 words.

YE-CREEPING TECH DYSTOPIA — We may remember 2018 as the year in which technology’s dystopian potential became clear, from Facebook’s role enabling the harvesting of our personal data for election interference to a seemingly unending series of revelations about the dark side of Silicon Valley’s connect-everything ethos. SENT: 1,280 words, photos.

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SPORTS

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BKN--76ERS-CELTICS — Kyrie Irving hits back-to-back 3-pointers in overtime for six of his 40 points and the Boston Celtics rally to a 121-114 win over the Philadelphia 76ers. SENT: 500 words, photos.

YE-FEEL-GOOD SPORTS MOMENTS OF THE YEAR — Sports inspired the usual agita this year — taunts, scrapes and scuffles, even the occasional riot — but more than its share of wry smiles, too. A 98-year-old nun stole the show at the Final Four. A homecoming queen kicked the game-winner for her high school football team. And in random acts of kindness stretching from hockey rinks in Calgary to a soccer stand in the Netherlands, teddy-bear throwing fans made sure the pint-sized fans sitting below didn’t go home empty-handed. By AP Sports Writer Jim Litke. SENT: 1,630 words, photos.

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HOW TO REACH US

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