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BC-AP News Digest 2 pm

May 7, 2019

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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ONLY ON AP

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CHINA-IMPLANTS _ Deep brain stimulation or DBS has been used for an increasing number of neurological and psychiatric disorders such as Parkinson’s disease. Doctors in China are testing these brain implant devices to treat drug addiction. Now, the controversial surgery is coming to America. A clinical trial in the U.S. for opioid addicts has just been greenlighted in West Virginia. By Erika Kinetz. UPCOMING: 1,900 words, photos by 11 p.m. Eds: An abridged version of 1,000 words will also move.

POLICE SHOOTING-CONNECTICUT _ A Connecticut police officer who fatally shot a man during an attempted traffic stop last month had been told his conduct was unacceptable by several former supervisors, including some who raised concerns about his difficulty handling stressful situations, according to personnel records obtained by The Associated Press. By Dave Collins. SENT: 650 words, photos.

PAKISTAN-CHINA-TRAFFICKING-BRIDES _ Muqadas Ashraf was just 16 when her parents married her off to a Chinese man who had come to Pakistan looking for a bride. Less than five months later, Muqadas is back in her home country, pregnant and seeking a divorce from a husband she says was abusive. She is one of hundreds of poor Christian girls who have been trafficked to China in a market for brides that has swiftly grown in Pakistan since late last year, activists say. Brokers are aggressively seeking out girls for Chinese men, sometimes even cruising outside churches to ask for potential brides. They are being helped by Christian clerics paid to target impoverished parents in their congregation with promises of wealth in exchange for their daughters. By Kathy Gannon and Dake Kang. SENT: 1,900 words, photos. An abridged version of 970 words has also been sent.

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TOP STORIES

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TRUMP-IMMIGRATION _ Hastily-written executive orders. Policy declarations by tweet. President Donald Trump’s White House hasn’t been known for carefully crafting policy. But that’s exactly what Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser, is trying to do as he prepares to roll out a long-awaited two-pronged immigration plan. Frustrated by congressional pushback and inaction, Kushner has assembled a team that is not only hashing out policy proposals_ but also drafting legislative language in-house, according to people familiar with the efforts. By Jill Colvin. SENT: 400 words. UPCOMING: 750 words by 4:30 p.m., photos, video.

CONGRESS-RUSSIA PROBE _ The Trump administration instructs former White House counsel Don McGahn to defy a subpoena for documents from the House Judiciary Committee, arguing that the materials are subject to executive privilege. It’s President Donald Trump’s latest pushback against Democratic-led investigations following special counsel Robert Mueller’s report, and comes as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell declares “case close” on the Russia probe. By Mary Clare Jalonick and Lisa Mascaro. SENT: 900 words. UPCOMING: 890 words by 5 p.m. photos, video. WITH: TRUMP-RUSSIA PROBE-FBI DIRECTOR _ FBI Director Chris Wray tells Congress he does not consider court-approved FBI surveillance to be “spying” and said he has no evidence the FBI illegally monitored President Donald Trump’s campaign during the 2016 election. By Eric Tucker and Michael Balsamo. SENT: 310 words. UPCOMING: 600 words by 3 p.m., photos, video.

TRUMP-CHINA-TARIFFS-Q&A _ A breakdown in trade talks between the United States and China is spooking financial markets and putting a chill on prospects for the global economy. A Q&A explains what went wrong, what the two countries are fighting over and what the fallout might be. By Paul Wiseman. Upcoming: 900 words, photos by 4 p.m. WITH: TRUMP-CHINA-TARRIFS _ US-China trade negotiations fall into disarray as US plans tariff hike. SENT: 850 words, photos.

IRAN-US _ Iran will announce it is partially withdrawing from the nuclear deal it struck with world powers, its state-run news agency reported, a year to the day that President Donald Trump pulled America from the accord. The terms of the withdrawal remain unclear, though the IRNA news agency said President Hassan Rouhani will explain Iran’s decision in letters to leaders of Britain, France and Germany that will be handed to ambassadors in Tehran. SENT: 990 words, photos.

PREGNANCY DEATHS _ More U.S. women are dying from pregnancy-related causes, and more than half of those deaths are considered preventable, according to a new government report. By Mike Stobbe and Marilynn Marchione. SENT: 650 words, photos.

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WHAT WE’RE TALKING ABOUT

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ODD--GATOR IN PANTS _ Sheriff’s officials say a Florida woman pulled a small alligator from her yoga pants during a routine traffic stop. SENT: 200 words.

CZECH-EXCREMENT EXHIBITION _ Whose poo is this? Prague Zoo takes a closer look at dung. SENT: 200 words, photos.

ALBANIA-LIONS _ Three lions from Tirana Zoo in Albania have been sedated and in about 48 hours will wake up at their new home, the Felida Big Cat Centre in the Netherlands. SENT: 400 words, photos.

FAILING DETROIT STREETLIGHTS _ Officials say some of Detroit’s new LED streetlights are prematurely dimming and burning out in parts of the city, thousands more could fail. SENT: 200 words, photos.

BRITAIN-ROYAL-BABY-NAME _ Alexander? James? Arthur? Guessing game on royal baby’s name. SENT: 260 words, photos.

TRUMP-YEARBOOK PHOTO _ A New Jersey high school yearbook adviser who was suspended after photos of two students were altered to remove President Trump’s name on their clothing is suing the district. SENT: 300 words.

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WASHINGTON/POLITICS

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TRUMP-PANHANDLE _ Residents in parts of the Florida Panhandle devastated by Hurricane Michael seven months ago hope President Donald Trump gets a glimpse of the continued suffering in the region when he arrives for a campaign rally this week. Area officials said the communities that were in the storm’s bullseye_ Panama City, Mexico Beach and surrounding Bay County _ had received about $1.1 billion in federal aid through mid-April. Mountains of debris have been removed, traffic lights work again and countless homes and businesses have been repaired. SENT: 800 words, photo.

SPY MUSEUM _ James Bond’s shiny silver sports car _ with its JB007 rotating license plate _ is the first thing visitors see when they step into the new and improved International Spy Museum that opens Sunday in Washington. After that, it’s as if the history of Hollywood’s famous private eye vanishes in invisible ink, while the stories of real-life spies and modern-day espionage take center stage. By Deb Riechmann. SENT: 830 words, photos, video.

MELANIA TRUMP _ First lady Melania Trump lays out plans to make her “Be Best’ initiative to help children even best-er. By Darlene Superville. SENT: 390 words. UPCOMING: 750 words by 4 p.m., photos, video.

UNITED STATES-POMPEO _ The Arctic is melting, but don’t ask U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to talk about climate change. Nor even to agree on a text that mentions it. By Diplomatic Writer Matthew Lee. SENT: 965 words, photos.

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NATIONAL

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JUVENILE TERROR LOOPHOLE _ The Justice Department’s ability to charge minors for supporting terrorist groups has been hampered by a 2018 Supreme Court decision. The ruling has forced federal prosecutors to hand off at least one such case to local authorities. The decision in a case unrelated to terrorism opened a loophole that could allow young supporters of groups like the Islamic State to skate on charges from the federal government. By Jake Bleiberg and Michael Balsamo. SENT: 680 words, photo.

MISSING GIRL-HOUSTON _ Officials say a 4-year-old Texas girl reported missing by her stepfather - who says he was knocked unconscious by the men he believes abducted her - was temporarily removed from her home along with two siblings after allegations of abuse last year. UPCOMING: 350 words, photos by 3 p.m.

ABORTION-GEORGIA _ Georgia’s Republican Gov. Brian Kemp signed legislation banning abortions once a fetal heartbeat can be detected. That can be as early as six weeks, before many women know they’re pregnant. Kemp said he was signing the bill “to ensure that all Georgians have the opportunity to live, grow, learn and prosper in our great state.” SENT: 600 words, photos.

HONOR FLIGHT VET DEATH _ A 95-year-old former soldier died last weekend aboard a so-called Honor Flight carrying World War II veterans home to San Diego after an all-expenses-paid weekend trip to Washington, D.C. Frank Manchel collapsed about an hour before the chartered American Airlines jet was due to land Sunday. SENT: 450 words.

BIG STEAM ENGINE _ It’s longer than two city buses, weighs more than a Boeing 747 fully loaded with passengers and can pull 16 Statues of Liberty over a mountain. The Big Boy No. 4014 steam locomotive rolled out of a Union Pacific restoration shop in Cheyenne over the weekend for a big debut after five years of restoration. It then headed toward Utah as part of a yearlong tour to commemorate the Transcontinental Railroad’s 150th anniversary. SENT: 630 words, photos.

MAGIC MUSHROOMS-DENVER VOTE _ Voters were deciding whether to make Denver the first U.S. city to decriminalize psilocybin _ the psychoactive substance in “magic mushrooms” _ and add a new chapter to the city’s role in shaping wider drug policy. A citizen initiative on the ballot followed the same tack taken by marijuana activists to decriminalize pot possession in 2005 in the city. That move was followed by statewide legalization in 2012. A number of other states then broadly allowed marijuana use and sales by adults. SENT: 600 words, photos.

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INTERNATIONAL

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ISRAEL-PALESTINIANS _ Qatar said it is sending $480 million to Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip after a cease-fire deal ended the deadliest fighting between Israel and Palestinian militants since a 2014 war. Qatar’s Foreign Ministry said $300 million would support health and education programs of the Palestinian Authority, while $180 million would go toward “urgent humanitarian relief” in U.N. programs and toward electricity. The Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip suffers from chronic electricity shortages. SENT: 725 words, photos.

SOUTH AFRICA-ELECTION _ A quarter-century after the end of apartheid, South Africans go to the polls Wednesday for the sixth national elections since the demise of the harsh system of racial discrimination, although the country remains divided by economic inequality. The African National Congress, the party of Nelson Mandela that has been in power since 1994, is likely to win a majority but it will face a difficult challenge to match the 62% of the vote that it won in the previous election five years ago. SENT: 675 words, photos.

SRI LANKA-BLASTS-PRESIDENT _ Sri Lanka’s president says “99%” of the suspects in Easter Sunday attacks on churches and hotels have been arrested and their explosive materials seized, and that it is safe for tourists to return to the Indian Ocean island nation. “The country is in a safe position right now,” President Maithripala Sirisena said in an interview with The Associated Press on Tuesday. SENT: 800 words, photos. WITH _ SRI LANKA-BLASTS _ All directly involved in Sri Lanka attacks dead or arrested. SENT: 500 words, photos.

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HEALTH/SCIENCE

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SCIENCE SAYS-WHY BIODIVERSITY MATTERS _ You may go your entire life without seeing an endangered species, yet the globe’s biodiversity crisis threatens all of humanity in numerous unseen or unrecognized ways, scientists say. A massive United Nations report this week warned that nature is in trouble, estimated 1 million species are threatened with extinction if nothing is done and said the worldwide deterioration of nature is everybody’s problem. By Science Writer By Seth Borenstein. SENT: 775 words, photos.

SCIENCE SAYS-MEATLESS MEATS _ A new era of meat alternatives is here, but patties from Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods can be nutritionally similar to beef. By Food & Health Writer Candace Choi. SENT: 810 words, photos.

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BUSINESS/TECHNOLOGY

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FINANCIAL MARKETS _ Stocks fell sharply on Wall Street after President Trump’s threat to escalate a trade war moved closer to reality. SENT: 450 words, photos, developing.

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ARTS/ENTERTAINMENT

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MET GALA-INSIDE: The cocktail bar was shutting down, and guests were being encouraged to begin the elegant trek to dinner through the grand halls of the Metropolitan Museum. But Joan Collins had swept in, channeling her “Dynasty” character in tiers of fluffy ivory feathers and gobs of blinding diamonds, and she wanted a glass of wine. “I’m having a great time,” she said, of her very first Met Gala. “I’d be even better if I had a drink.” A look inside the festivities at one of the world’s most exclusive parties. By National Writer Jocelyn Noveck. SENT. 1069 words, with photos, video.

TV-COURT TV REBOOT _ Court TV is ending its long recess. The channel that thrived during the trial-crazy 1990s comes back from the dead after more than a decade amid true-crime craze that its backers hope will launch it into a long new life. The new Court TV, which will be available over the air and on some cable providers, will focus on big cases such as the upcoming sexual assault trial of Harvey Weinstein. But it will also focus on little-known trials that were essential to the old network. By Entertainment Writer Andrew Dalton. SENT: 990 words, photos.

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SPORTS

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FBN--CONCUSSION SETTLEMENT _ The NFL concussion fund says it has paid out $485 million since its start in 2017, a claims administrator says. But some retired players’ lawyers say there aren’t enough doctors in the approved network to diagnose dementia cases. SENT: 140 words. UPCOMING: 500 words, photos by 4 p.m.

RAC--PREAKNESS-COUNTRY HOUSE _ Kentucky Derby winner Country House is skipping the Preakness, ending the chance of a third Triple Crown in five years. The decision is confirmed to the AP by the colt’s assistant trainer. Country House won the Derby as a 65-1 shot after Maximum Security was disqualified. SENT: 350 words, photos.

HKN--STARS-BLUES _ After winning in Dallas to force Game 7, the Blues can reach the conference finals with a victory at home. St. Louis has been riding the play of rookie goalie Jordan Binnington. Stars goalie Ben Bishop left Game 6 with a shoulder injury but should play. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos. Game starts 8 p.m. EDT.

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HOW TO REACH US

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At the Nerve Center, Richard A. Somma can be reached at 800-845-8450 (ext. 1600). For photos, Courtney Dittmar (ext. 1900). For graphics and interactives, Phil Holm (ext. 7636). Expanded AP content can be obtained from http://newsroom.ap.org. For access to AP Newsroom and other technical issues, contact apcustomersupport(at)ap.org or call 877-836-9477.

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