TOP STORIES:

BUDGET BATTLE

WASHINGTON — The U.S. government reopened its doors Thursday after Congress passed legislation to end a government shutdown and — just in the nick of time — avert a U.S. debt default in a bipartisan deal that left Republicans little to show for the epic political drama that threatened to rattle the world economy.

AP Photos, video.

UN-SECURITY COUNCIL ELECTIONS

UNITED NATIONS — The U.N. General Assembly elects five new members to the Security Council on Thursday and the winners are virtually certain because there are no contested races — Nigeria, Chad, Saudi Arabia, Lithuania and Chile. By Edith M. Lederer. Eds: General Assembly meets at 10 a.m. EDT to vote.

NSA-DRONE STRIKES

WASHINGTON — The National Security Agency has been extensively involved in the U.S. government's targeted killing program, collaborating closely with the CIA in the use of drone strikes against terrorists abroad, The Washington Post reported after a review of documents provided by former NSA systems analyst Edward Snowden.

UNITED STATES-CAMBODIA

WASHINGTON — Cambodia's opposition leader says international donors should not do "business as usual" with the aid-dependent government of long-time ruler Hun Sen unless he agrees to an independent probe into July's disputed election. By Matthew Pennington.

AP Photos.

JAMAICA-ERASING THE DONS

KINGSTON, Jamaica — Black-clad police with submachine guns entered the slum of narrow alleys lined with wooden shacks and crumbling buildings. They were looking for fugitives, drugs and guns, but they had an additional target this time — murals celebrating leaders of Jamaica's violent underworld. With rollers and paint, the officers erased the images of the "dons" who have long been hailed as Robin Hoods by the poor. By David McFadden.

AP Photos.

DOCTOR-WIFE DEATH

PROVO, Utah — A Utah doctor accused of convincing his wife to get a facelift and then killing her with the drugs to help her recovery goes on trial six years after her death. Prosecutors say he wanted to continue an affair with a woman named Gypsy. By Paul Foy.

US-SENATE ELECTION

NEW JERSEY — The high-profile mayor of New Jersey's largest city won a special election to represent New Jersey in the U.S. Senate, giving the rising Democratic star a bigger political stage after defeating a conservative Republican who is a former small-town mayor. By Angela Delli Santi and Samantha Henry.

AP Photos.

BUSINESS AND FINANCE:

CANADA-EU FREE TRADE

TORONTO — Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper plans to travel to Brussels on Thursday to conclude a free trade deal with the European Union. An EU official said the European Union and Canada hope to conclude the free trade deal in the "coming days." By Rob Gillies.

HAITI-UNSAFE FACTORIES

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — Haiti's garment factories are unsafe for their workers, often lacking marked fire exits, safe drinking water and sufficient toilets, a labor group says. By Trenton Daniel.

LIFESTYLES:

TIPPING POINT-TASTE OF CHANGE

MIAMI — Salsa overtaking ketchup as America's No. 1 condiment was just the start. These days, tortillas outsell burger and hot dog buns; sales of tortilla chips trump potato chips; and tacos and burritos have become so ubiquitously "American," most people don't even consider them ethnic. As immigrant and minority populations rewrite American demographics, the nation's collective menu is reflecting this flux. By Suzette LaBoy and J.M. Hirsch.

AP Photos.

BRAZIL-RIO'S CAIMANS

RIO DE JANEIRO — Oh, the glories of Rio that await spectators and athletes at the 2016 Olympics: those beaches, that music, the dramatic mountains. And then there are a few thousand alligator-like creatures slithering through sewage-like lagoons. By Jenny Barchfield.

AP Photos.

FOOD-BRAZIL-EATING BRAZIL

RIO DE JANEIRO — Brazil's top chef is a man with a mission. Alex Atala is out to transform the lackluster image of Brazilian cuisine both at home and abroad so the South American giant will be as celebrated for its home-grown delicacies as it is for soccer players, models and music. By Jenny Barchfield.

AP Photos.

ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT:

MARCOS STAFFER-ART CONSPIRACY

NEW YORK — A debt-ridden onetime aide to Imelda Marcos wrongly sold a hidden treasure: a $32 million Monet painting the former Philippine first lady had acquired and her country wants back, prosecutors say as the ex-assistant's conspiracy trial opened. By Jennifer Peltz.

SPORTS:

MEXICO-INDIAN BASKETBALL

MEXICO CITY — A team of Trique Indian boys sweeps through a youth basketball tournament despite their generally short stature and the fact that most play barefoot, earning acclaim in Mexico and abroad. By E. Eduardo Castillo.