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BC-AP News Digest 7 am

March 15, 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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TOP STORIES

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NEW ZEALAND-MOSQUE SHOOTING _ At least 49 people were killed in mass shootings at two mosques full of worshippers attending prayers on what the prime minister called “one of New Zealand’s darkest days.” One man was arrested and charged with murder in what appeared to be a carefully planned racist attack. Police also defused explosive devices in a car. By Mark Baker and Nick Perry. SENT: 1,050 words, photos. UPCOMING: Developing. With NEW ZEALAND-MOSQUE SHOOTING-THE LATEST; CRI--NEW ZEALAND-MOSQUE SHOOTING-BANGLADESH TEAM _ Bangladesh cricketers avoid mosque shooting; match canceled. By Sports Writer Steve McMorran. SENT: 620 words, photos; NEW ZEALAND-MOSQUE SHOOTING-WORLD REACTION _ Turkey’s Erdogan condemns New Zealand mosque; NEW ZEALAND-MOSQUE SHOOTING-WORLD REACTION-THE LATEST; HOUSES OF WORSHIP-ATTACKS _ A look at attacks on houses of worship over last decade; NEW ZEALAND-BREIVIK _ NZ manifesto resembles Norway mass murderer’s text (all sent).

ISRAEL-GAZA _ Israeli warplanes struck some 100 Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip in response to a rare rocket attack on the Israeli metropolis of Tel Aviv. Rocket fire persisted into the morning, setting the stage for additional possible reprisals. By Josef Federman and Fares Akram. SENT: 790 words, photos. With ISRAEL-GAZA-THE LATEST.

ELECTION 2020-DEMOCRATS _ The contours of the Democratic presidential primary come into clearer focus with Texan Beto O’Rourke’s entry into the race. In a contest that will be shaped by questions about race and gender, political ideology and generational change, former Vice President Joe Biden is now the only major contender still on the sidelines. By Washington Bureau Chief Julie Pace. SENT: 1,020 words, photos, video.

TRUMP-BORDER SECURITY _ President Donald Trump is promising his first veto after the Republican-led Senate voted to terminate emergency declaration for the border wall with Mexico, capping a week of risky confrontations with the White House as Congress exerts its own authority in new ways. By Alan Fram, Lisa Mascaro and Catherine Lucey. SENT: 1,160 words, photos, video. With TRUMP-BORDER SECURITY-GOP DEFECTORS _ What Republican defectors said about their votes. SENT: 700 words, photos.

WINTER WEATHER _ A late-winter storm system continued its trek across the Midwest, expecting to send rain and snow into Minnesota and Illinois on Friday after leaving devastating flooding in parts of eastern Nebraska and Iowa. By Josh Funk and Blake Nicholson. SENT: 930 words, photos.

TESLA-MODEL Y _ Tesla is unveiling its newest vehicle, the Model Y, an SUV that the automaker hopes will win over consumers looking for an all-electric alternative in the most popular segment of the auto market. By Business Writers Alex Veiga and Michael Liedtke. SENT: 970 words, photos.

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WHAT WE’RE TALKING ABOUT

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ALGERIA-PROTEST _ Riot police vans line streets around Algeria’s capital and a helicopter is circling as the country braces for what could be decisive protests against longtime leader Abdelaziz Bouteflika. SENT: 140 words, photos.

VOLKSWAGEN-DIESEL EMISSIONS _ SEC charges Volkswagen, former CEO Winterkorn with defrauding American bond investors during its emissions scandal. SENT: 110 words.

TRUMP-RUSSIA PROBE-FLYNN _ Defense lawyers for a one-time business partner of former national security adviser Michael Flynn want the government to disclose more of what it knows about Flynn’s admissions to special Counsel Robert Mueller. SENT: 130 words.

EUROPE-ARMS CONTROL _ A group of European nations is urging Russia not to abandon a nuclear weapons treaty with the United States. SENT: 130 words, photo.

ELECTION 2020-KAMALA HARRIS _ Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris says there should be a federal moratorium on executions. SENT: 320 words, photo.

CIVIL RIGHTS ORGANIZATION-FOUNDER FIRED _ The Alabama-based Southern Poverty Law Center, a nationally known nonprofit that monitors hate organizations, fires co-founder Morris Dees, who once won a lawsuit that bankrupted a leading Ku Klux Klan group. SENT: 320 words, photo.

SANTA ANITA-FATALITIES _ A filly broke both front legs at the end of a workout on the main dirt track at Santa Anita and has been euthanized, becoming the 22nd horse to suffer catastrophic injuries since Dec. 26. SENT: 1,050 words, photo.

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WASHINGTON/POLITICS

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NORTH CAROLINA-DISPUTED ELECTION _ A conservative soldier in the country’s culture wars heads the Republican field as a deadline nears for a new North Carolina congressional election needed because of earlier ballot misdeeds. SENT: 130 words photos. UPCOMING: Will be updated.

TRUMP FOUNDATION-INVESTIGATION _ New York’s attorney general says insider testimony, emails and other evidence support allegations that President Trump turned his charitable foundation into a wing of his White House campaign. SENT: 480 words.

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INTERNATIONAL

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ETHIOPIA-PLANE CRASH _ The pilot of the Ethiopian Airlines plane that crashed requested permission “in a panicky voice” to return to the airport shortly after takeoff, The New York Times reports, as the airline said the investigation into the flight recorders had begun. SENT: 760 words, video, photo. With ETHIOPIA-PLANE CRASH-THE LATEST.

NKOREA-US _ North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will soon decide whether to continue diplomatic talks and maintain his moratorium on missile launches and nuclear tests, a senior North Korean official says, adding that the U.S. threw away a golden opportunity at the recent summit between their leaders. SENT: 680 words, photos.

BREXIT _ British Prime Minister Theresa May worked Friday to pull off an against-the-odds rescue for her European Union divorce deal, after Parliament voted to postpone Brexit to avert a chaotic U.K. departure in two weeks. SENT: 580 words, photos. With BREXIT-THE LATEST.

UNITED STATES-AFGHANISTAN _ Afghanistan’s national security adviser blasted the U.S. talks with the Taliban, saying the Trump administration has alienated the Afghan government, legitimized the militant network and is crafting a deal that will never lead to peace. SENT: 820 words, photo.

EUROPE-MIGRANTS _ Forty-five migrants died trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea to Spain, including pregnant women, a Spanish rights activist says, quoting survivors. Morocco reported that at least 21 other migrants were rescued at sea. SENT: 360 words.

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NATIONAL

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COLLEGE ADMISSIONS-BRIBERY-ETHICS _ The college-admissions bribery scheme revealed this week by federal prosecutors coincides with increasing cynicism about U.S. moral values. Ethics experts say Americans are barraged with accounts of corruption, greed and amoral behavior to the point that many likely wonder, “Why should I play by the rules?” Unethical behavior has always been among America’s national pastimes. Yet a strong case can be made that this moment is distinctive, with its constant stream of high-profile scandals. By National Writer David Crary. SENT: 840 words, photos.

SHIPWRECK BEER _ An ale introduced at a New York beer festival this month comes with an intriguing backstory _ brewed from yeast in beer that went down on a doomed steamship and languished on the ocean floor for 131 years. Long Island brewer Jamie Adams created his new Deep Ascent ale using yeast from bottles he and fellow divers salvaged from the SS Oregon, a Liverpool-to-New York luxury liner that sank off Fire Island in 1886. Adams said his aim was to recreate what it was like to drink a brew from that era. SENT: 590 words, video, photos.

HUD OFFICIAL-PUBLIC HOUSING STAYS _ The federal official who appeared at Michael Cohen’s congressional testimony to counter Cohen’s assertion that President Donald Trump is a racist has spent the past month bunking with tenants in New York City public housing complexes. Housing official Lynne Patton says she wanted to shine a spotlight on public housing ills such as mold and heat and hot water outages by spending a week at a time in four different complexes run by the New York City Housing Authority. SENT: 1,000 words, photos.

CLIMATE-STUDENT PROTESTS _ They’re angry at their elders, and they’re not taking it sitting down. Students worldwide are planning to skip class and take to the streets to protest their governments’ failure to take sufficient action against global warming. SENT: 680 words, photos.

ONE FREE PRESS-INITIATIVE _ A coalition of more than a dozen global news organizations, including The Associated Press, The Financial Times and Reuters, will spotlight the world’s most threatened journalists in a new freedom of speech initiative, the group announced in New York. SENT: 540 words, photos.

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BUSINESS/TECH

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ETHIOPIA-PLANE CRASH-BOEING _ In an era of unprecedented airline safety, Boeing’s newest version of its best-selling airliner has crashed twice in less than six months, killing 346 people and delivering a massive blow to the company’s reputation. More than 40 countries either grounded the planes or refused to let them into their airspace after determining that Sunday’s crash of a 737 Max 8 in Ethiopia bore enough similarities to Indonesia’s Lion Air crash of the same model in October. After holding out for several days, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration issued an emergency order grounding the planes. By Business Writer Cathy bussewitz. SENT: 890 words, photo.

FAA-INDUSTRY TIES _ For more than six decades, the Federal Aviation Administration has relied on employees of airplane manufacturers to do government-required safety inspections as planes are being designed or assembled. But critics say the system, dubbed the “designee program,” is too cozy as company employees do work for an agency charged with keeping the skies safe while being paid by an industry that the FAA is regulating. By Business Writers Tom Krisher, David Koenig and Dee-Ann Durbin. SENT: 860 words, photos.

CHINA-CONGRESS-ECONOMY _ China’s top economic official says China needs ‘strong measures’ to support economy; By Business Writer Joe McDonald. SENT: 810 words, photos. With CHINA-CONGRESS-SPYING _ China’s No. 2 leader denied Beijing tells its companies to spy abroad, refuting U.S. warnings that Chinese technology suppliers might be a security risk.; CHINA-CONGRESS-TAIWAN _ China’s premier says China will offer Taiwan ‘preferential policies’ (both sent).

JAPAN-BITCOIN _ Mark Karpeles, who headed Mt. Gox, a Tokyo-based bitcoin exchange that went bankrupt after a massive hacking, was found guilty of manipulating electronic data but cleared of embezzlement and breach of trust charges. By Business Writer Yuri Kageyama. SENT: 690 words, photo.

FACEBOOK-EXECUTIVE DEPARTURES _Two top Facebook executives are leaving the company, including product chief Chris Cox, who was long one of CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s top deputies. By Technology Writers Michael Liedtke and Rachel Lerman. SENT: 550 words, photos. With FACEBOOK OUTAGE _ Facebook says its lengthy outage problems were the result of a “server configuration change.” SENT: 150 words photo.

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HEALTH/SCIENCE

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SCIENCE GOES TO THE DOGS _ A new exhibit at a Los Angeles museum examines the relationship between dogs and humans and explores why the two species seem to think so much alike and get along so well. “Dogs! A Science Tail” opens Saturday at the California Science Center. The show is part science, part history, part Norman Rockwell Americana and all canine. It features artwork, demonstrations by real working dogs, and stations that allow people to see, smell and hear like a dog does. SENT: 870 words, photos.

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SPORTS

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NHL-GROWING DIVERSITY _ Minority players in the NHL remain a relative rarity. But the effort to increase diversity in the sport at the youth level has never been more robust than it is now. The results can be seen in neighborhoods in places like Philadelphia and Detroit where basketball, baseball and football are still the top choices for many. The NHL says it has spent $100 million along with the players’ union since 2015 to grow diversity in the sport. By Hockey Writer Stephen Whyno. SENT: 1,440 words, photos.

TOKYO-ROBOTS _ Tokyo’s Olympics may become known as the “Robot Games.” Organizers showed off robots that will be used at the new National Stadium to provide assistance for fans using wheelchairs. Tokyo Olympic official Masaaki Komiya pointed out that Japan is known for its robot technology, and the 2020 Summer Games are a good place to show off. By Sports Writer Stephen Wade. SENT: 450 words, photos.

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HOW TO REACH US

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At the Nerve Center, Rob Jagodzinski can be reached at 800-845-8450 (ext. 1600). For photos, ext. 1900. For graphics and interactives, 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.