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BC-AP Top Stories Digest

January 4, 2019

Here are the AP’s latest coverage plans, top stories and promotable content. All times EDT.

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TOP STORIES

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GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN — House Democrats pass a plan to re-open the government without funding President Donald Trump’s promised border wall. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says: “We’re not doing a wall. Does anyone have any doubt that we’re not doing a wall?” By Matthew Daly, Catherine Lucey and Jill Colvin. SENT: 990 words, photos, video.

NEW CONGRESS-PELOSI — Nancy Pelosi knew this moment would come, even if others had their doubts — or worked to stop her. Pelosi was elected Thursday as House speaker, the only woman who has held the office and now one of few elected officials who have returned to it. By Congressional Correspondent Lisa Mascaro. SENT: 700 words, photos.

ISRAEL-FRAGMENTED ELECTION — Barring a devastating legal ruling against him in a series of corruption allegations, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu looks to be cruising toward re-election and a historic fifth term in office after the upcoming April 9 vote. Part of his longevity is due to Israel’s splintered electoral system, which allows him to rule with just a quarter of the vote for his ruling Likud Party. By Aron Heller. SENT: 990 words, photos.

RHODES SCHOLAR-DACA RECIPIENT — He became the first “Dreamer” to win the prestigious Rhodes scholarship, but for recent Harvard University graduate Jin Park, the joy of that achievement has given way to uncertainty. The 22-year-old, who lives in New York City, risks not being allowed back in the country if he enrolls at the University of Oxford in England in the fall. By Philip Marcelo. SENT: 830 words, photos, video.

CHINA-SPACE — The Chinese rover on the “dark” side of the moon is making its tracks on the soft lunar surface. The Jade Rabbit 2 rover drove off its lander’s ramp and onto the soft, snow-like surface at 10:22 p.m. Thursday, about 12 hours after a Chinese spacecraft made the first-ever landing on the moon’s far side. A photo posted online by China’s space agency showed tracks the rover left as headed away from the spacecraft. SENT: 330 words, photos, video. Developing.

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INTERNATIONAL

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BANGLADESH-ELECTION — Congratulatory messages are flowing to Bangladesh’s Prime Minister-elect Sheikh Hasina, ensuring she will withstand the reverberating calls to investigate serious allegations of widespread irregularities in Sunday’s election that was dominated by her coalition. Hasina is set to form her third consecutive government and fourth overall. SENT: 1,235 words, photos.

KOREAS-NORTH KOREAN DEFECTIONS — North Korea’s top diplomat to Italy, who South Korea’s spy agency says has gone into hiding along with his wife, appears to be the latest member of the North’s elite to abandon the secretive totalitarian state. Many of them have expressed frustration over what they described as an oppressive police state in Pyongyang or desires for their families to have new lives in South Korea or the West. A look at some of the high-profile defections from North Korea. SENT: 630 words, photos.

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NATIONAL

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FATAL CRASH-INTERSTATE FIRE-FLORIDA — Two big rigs and two passenger vehicles collided and spilled diesel fuel across a Florida highway Thursday, sparking a massive fire that killed seven people, authorities said. The wreck happened on Interstate 75 about a mile (1.6 kilometers) south of Alachua, near Gainesville. The flames were fed by about 50 gallons of diesel, authorities said. SENT: 350 words, photos, video.

NAVY SEAL-MURDER CHARGE — A decorated Navy SEAL is facing charges of premediated murder and numerous other offenses in connection with the fatal stabbing of a teenage Islamic State prisoner under his care in Iraq in 2017, along with the shooting of unarmed Iraqi civilians. Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher plans to plead not guilty to all the charges Friday during an arraignment hearing at Naval Base San Diego. SENT: 700 words, photo.

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BUSINESS

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ECONOMY-JOBS REPORT-LOOKAHEAD — Even with fear of a global economic slump depressing stock markets, Friday’s jobs report for December is expected to offer reassurance that the U.S. economy remains sturdy and on track to expand for a 10th straight year. SENT: 430 words.

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SPORTS

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BKW--T25-UCONN’S STREAK SNAPPED — UConn All-America players Katie Lou Samuelson and Naphessa Collier won a national title and went to two other Final Fours before experiencing this. The team’s only seniors are coming off a loss in the regular season for the first time. UPCOMING: 720 words, photos by 4 a.m.

FBN--AFC PLAYOFF PICTURE — For the first time in a decade, the top seed in the AFC playoffs goes to a team not led by Tom Brady or Peyton Manning. The Kansas City Chiefs earned the No. 1 seed for the first time since 1997 after switching from Alex Smith to Patrick Mahomes, the sensational second-year star who reminds so many of Brett Favre. UPCOMING: 1,400 words, photos by 4 a.m.

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