AP NEWS
Related topics

BC-AP Top Stories Digest

February 18, 2019

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 .

----------------

TOP STORIES

----------------

ELECTION 2020-TRUMP THE PUNDIT — President Donald Trump is shaping up as an unlikely armchair pundit of the Democratic presidential race, handicapping Kamala Harris as the best opener, branding Elizabeth Warren’s video a bit odd and searching — always searching — for the perfect nicknames for his foes. By Zeke Miller. SENT: 970 words, photos.

SYRIA — More than 300 Islamic State militants surrounded in a tiny area in eastern Syria are refusing to surrender to U.S.-backed Syrian forces and are trying to negotiate an exit, Syrian activists and a person close to the negotiations say. SENT: 670 words, photos.

POLAND-ISRAEL — Poland withdraws from a European summit, derailing the meeting and embarrassing its Israeli hosts, to protest claims by Israel’s acting foreign minister that Poles collaborated with the Nazis and “suckled anti-Semitism with their mothers’ milk.” The abrupt cancellation marks a new low in a bitter and long-running conflict between Poland and Israel over how to characterize Polish actions toward its Jewish community during World War II. By Josef Federman. SENT: 610 words, photos. UPCOMING: New approach of 750 words by 4 p.m.

NIGERIA-ELECTION-WOMEN IN POLITICS — Nervous ahead of Nigeria’s election, dozens of first-time female candidates are seeking office in a country where the percentage of women in parliament is one of the lowest in the world, under 7 percent, and the idea of a female president brings a belly laugh from many men. They are trying to break the grip of Nigeria’s two main political parties, which traditionally have been less about issues and more about winning power at all costs. By Cara Anna. SENT: 930 words, photos.

BRAZIL-SPIRITUAL GURU-METOO — For over 40 years, spiritual healer Joao Teixeira de Faria drew people from all over the world to this small city in central Brazil, offering treatment for everything from depression to cancer. His work was both praised — Oprah Winfrey called de Faria “inspiring” while visiting in 2012 — and heavily scrutinized. Now, de Faria, who goes by the name “Joao de Deus,” or “John of God,” is in trouble with the law. SENT: 1,190 words, photos.

FRANCE-LEARNING LIGHTSABER — In France, it is easier than ever now to act out “Star Wars” fantasies, after its fencing federation took the radical step of officially recognizing lightsaber dueling as a competitive sport, granting the iconic weapon from George Lucas’ saga about a galaxy far, far away the same status as the foil, epee and sabre, the traditional blades used at the Olympics. By Sports Writer John Leicester. SENT: 950 words, photos, video.

-------------------------------------

WHAT WE’RE TALKING ABOUT

-------------------------------------

OBIT-WWII KISSING SAILOR PHOTO — Sailor in iconic V-J Day Times Square kiss photo dies at 95. SENT: 370 words, photos.

------------------------------

WASHINGTON/POLITICS

------------------------------

WASHINGTON-GUERRILLA PROTEST —From fake street signs to Robert Mueller-themed ice cream trucks, activists in the nation’s capital have honed a particular brand of performative prankster-style protest. SENT: 1,060 words, photos.

---------------------

INTERNATIONAL

---------------------

BRITAIN-LABOUR PARTY —Seven British lawmakers quit the main opposition Labour Party on Monday over its approach to Brexit and anti-Semitism — the biggest shake-up in years for one of Britain’s major political parties. SENT: 830 words, photos.

--------------------

BUSINESS/TECH

--------------------

CHINA-US-HUAWEI —China’s government on Monday accused the United States of trying to block its industrial development by alleging that Chinese mobile network gear poses a cybersecurity threat to countries rolling out new internet systems. By Business Writer Joe McDonald. SENT: 760 words, photo.