Here's a look at how AP's general news coverage is shaping up today. Some plans are subject to change.


Among today's coverage highlights as we see them at 11545 GMT:

-- TV-AFTER STEWART (upcoming)

-- BRIAN WILLIAMS (sent; developing)

-- THREE KILLED-NORTH CAROLINA (sent; developing)

-- CONGRESS-WAR POWERS (sent; developing)

-- AMERICAN-ISLAMIC STATE (sent; developing)

-- YEMEN (sent; developing)


-- UKRAINE (sent; developing)

-- ITALY-MIGRANT DEATHS (sent; developing)

-- CONGRESS-KEYSTONE (sent; developing)

-- AMERICAN SNIPER TRIAL (sent; developing)




-- TV-JON STEWART (sent; developing)

-- JEEP FIRES (upcoming)


-- ITALY-SHIPWRECK TRIAL (sent; developing)


-- TV-SNL 40TH (sent)




PHOTOS: VALENTINES-HOW WE MET (photo essay with extended captions; upcoming); MIDEAST-WEATHER (sent)


Here are details of those stories, plus others we have in the works for today and notable pieces that we sent in the past 10 hours:


CONGRESS-WAR POWERS - Obama asks Congress to formally authorize war against the Islamic State group, arguing the militants could pose a threat to the U.S. homeland and urging lawmakers to "show the world we are united in our resolve to counter the threat." SENT: 900 words. UPCOMING: Updates throughout the day; Obama statement at 2030 GMT; 850 words by 2230 GMT, photos.

CONGRESS-WAR POWERS-HIGHLIGHTS - Highlights of Obama's proposed authorization for military force against the Islamic State. SENT: 100 words.

THREE KILLED-NORTH CAROLINA - An ongoing parking dispute between neighbors sparked the shooting deaths of three family members at a quiet condominium complex near the University of North Carolina campus, police said Wednesday. UPCOMING: Developing on many fronts; staffing in all formats.

AMERICAN-ISLAMIC STATE - Congress members say efforts to free a 26-year-old American aid worker held hostage by the Islamic State played out behind the scenes, including a failed attempt by a man who told her captors at a prison camp where she was held that he was her husband in a ruse designed to free her. SENT: 900 words, photos, video. UPCOMING: Developing a number of angles; details TBD; 800 words by 2200 GMT, photos, video.

AMERICAN SNIPER-TRIAL - Trial opens for ex-Marine accused in 'American Sniper' death. SENT: 690 words, photos. UPCOMING: Develooping; opening statements expected at 1500 GMT.

STAIRWELL SHOOTING - A rookie police officer who fired into a darkened stairwell at a public housing complex, killing an unarmed man who had been waiting for an elevator, appears in court Wednesday. SENT: 780 words. UPCOMING: developments from mid-afternoon court appearance.

FIFTY SHADES-SCHOOL PUZZLE - Fifty shades of inappropriate: Middle school students get word search puzzles of erotic movie. SENT: 130 words. UPCOMING: Developing.

CONGRESS-KEYSTONE - The Republican-controlled Congress is set to send a bill approving the Keystone XL oil pipeline to Obama, who has vowed to veto it. SENT: 500 words. Upcoming: Updates from late-afternoon House vote.

UNITED STATES-EBOLA: With the Ebola outbreak sharply reduced, the United States is preparing to withdraw nearly all of its troops fighting the disease in West Africa. SENT: 400 words. UPCOMING: Updates from 1535 GMT White House event.

OBAMA-GAY MARRIAGE - Obama is disputing a longtime aide's view that Obama feigned opposition to gay marriage, compromising his true beliefs out of concern it could hurt him with voters. SENT: 490 words, photo.


YEMEN - The turmoil in Yemen after the power grab by Shiite rebels is starting to resonate across the strategic region as they gear up to try and bring the entire Arab nation under their control. SENT: 700 words, photos. UPCOMING: 1,000 words, photos by 1900 GMT.

GUANTANAMO-FREED DETAINEES - Former Guantanamo Bay detainees who have returned to the battlefield are complicating Obama's hopes of closing the detention center for terrorism suspects on the U.S. Navy base in Cuba. SENT: 960 words, photo.

UKRAINE - Fighting continues to rage in eastern Ukraine ahead of crucial peace talks between the country's president and Russian President Vladimir Putin which are brokered by France and Germany and will be held in Belarus later in the day. SENT: 450 words, photos, video. UPCOMING: Will be updated throughout the day.

ITALY-MIGRANT DEATHS - UN: At least 300 migrants unaccounted-for as EU rescue operation comes under fire. SENT: 300 words. UPCOMING: Developing.

SYRIA-MODERATE ALLIANCE - Kurdish fighters in Syria have ambitions to become the chief force fighting Islamic State extremists in the country - building on their victory in Kobani to ally with moderate rebels and push the jihadis ever further. SENT: 1,080 words, photos.

SYRIA - Syrian troops and members of Lebanon's Hezbollah group seized several towns and villages Wednesday south of Damascus, state media and activists said. SENT: 350 words, photos.

IRAN ROUHANI's DEAL - As the clock ticks toward a deadline in Iran's negotiations over the fate of its nuclear program, President Hassan Rouhani's administration has managed to brush off scathing criticism from hard-liners at home as he makes the case that a deal will bring peace and stability. UPCOMING.

NIGERIA-BRING BACK OUR GIRLS - Months after Nigeria and the West failed to rescue more than 200 kidnapped schoolgirls, Boko Haram is bragging about their alleged marriage to fighters and conversion to Islam. SENT: 1,200 words, photos and video.

ITALY-SHIPWRECK TRIAL - The captain of the capsized Costa Concordia luxury liner told the court trying him for 32 shipwreck deaths that his "head was sacrificed" to safeguard economic interests, then broke down in sobs immediately before the panel began deliberating his fate Wednesday. SENT: 580 words, photos. UPCOMING: Developing.

MALAYSIA-ANWAR - Malaysian police detain a cartoonist and investigate two lawmakers for sedition over tweets and a cartoon condemning the judiciary for dismissing opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim's final appeal against a sodomy conviction. SENT: 740 words, photos.

UNITED STATES-MALAYSIA-ANALYSIS- The sodomy conviction of Malaysia's opposition leader has set back, but not unraveled, Washington's improved ties with a country that is becoming increasingly important for U.S. diplomacy and trade policy in Asia.

SOUTH KOREA-100 CAR PILEUP - Two people are killed and more than 60 are injured after a pileup involving about 100 vehicles in foggy weather on a bridge near the Incheon International Airport. SENT: 300 words, photos.

MIDEAST-WEATHER - A Mideast sandstorm roared into Israel and Lebanon on Wednesday, causing the worst Israeli air pollution in years and sending powerful waves tearing into Beirut's famed corniche along the Mediterranean Sea. SENT: 250 words, photos.

MALI-ELEPHANTS KILLED - Motorcycle-riding poachers have killed at least 19 elephants over the past month, officials said Wednesday, marking a significant blow to a rare grouping that lives in a part of central Mali where al-Qaida and other extremists have been active. SENT: 350 words.

- CHINA-US - Chinese leader Xi Jinping to make first state visit to US in September at Obama's invitation. SENT: 340 words, photos.

AUSTRALIA-TERRORISM - Two men are charged with planning to launch an imminent terrorist attack in Australia. SENT: 700 words.

TAIWAN-HOSTAGES HELD - Six inmates take prison staff including the warden hostage, seize guns and ammunition, and demand safe exit from a prison in southern Taiwan. SENT: 330 words.

MOROCCO-IMMIGRATION - Moroccan security forces have arrested hundreds of people in a sweep through a mountainous area where migrants had been living near the Spanish coastal enclave of Melilla, activists said Wednesday. SENT: 300 words, photos.

INDIA-CRUSADER'S RETURN - Once scorned, New Delhi election victor gets second chance and proves Modi's machine is beatable. SENT: 830 words, photos.

TAIWAN-PLANE CRASH - Taiwan's aviation authority orders the suspension of 10 pilots from TransAsia Airways who failed a proficiency test given after one of the airline's planes crashed, killing at least 42 people. SENT: 310 words.

SKOREA-SHIP SINKS - A South Korean court sentences a former coast guard officer to four years in prison for negligence while rescuing passengers during last year's ferry sinking that killed more than 300 people. SENT: 310 words.

MYANMAR-VOTING RIGHTS - Hundreds of people demonstrate in Yangon, Myanmar's biggest city, to protest a government decision to allow people without full citizenship. SENT: 360 words.

PHILIPPINES-POLICE COMMANDOS KILLED - The Philippine police chief says Muslim rebels shot to death some of his anti-terror commandos as they lay wounded in a fierce gunbattle last month that has stalled the government's peace deal with the insurgents. SENT: 540 words, photos.

VIETNAM-BLOGGER - A prominent Vietnamese blogger who is partially paralyzed and was jailed two months ago for posting articles that oppose the Communist Party is released from prison on medical parole. SENT: 290 words.

NEW ZEALAND-175 YEARS - Thousands of New Zealanders watch indigenous Maori dancers twirl white "poi" balls and take to traditional canoes in the picturesque Bay of Islands as the country celebrates its 175th anniversary. SENT: 450 words, photos.


TV-AFTER STEWART - After two decades of lampooning politics, and after 16 years with Jon Stewart as its overlord, can Comedy Central hold on to its "Indecision" franchise without Stewart as the 2016 race heats up? UPCOMING.

JON STEWART - Jon Stewart's exit as a phony newsman is a loss to real news and the audience that craved it. SENT: 850 words, photos.

TV-NBC-WILLIAMS - In suspending Brian Williams for six months for misleading viewers, NBC Universal chief Steve Burke says his chief anchor deserves a second chance. Whether he actually gets one is an open question. UPCOMING.

TV-SNL 40TH - "The SNL 40th Anniversary Special," three hours of it, airs live on Sunday. Everyone who has ever been an "SNL" regular, guest host, musical guest or behind-the-scenes creative force has been invited. SENT: 900 words, photos.

MUSIC-STEVIE WONDER TRIBUTE - The official after-party for the Grammy Awards was a tribute concert for Stevie Wonder. SENT: 460 words, photos.

GAMES-Q&A-WILL ARNETT — Will Arnett is inviting gamers to watch him play video games with his friends. SENT: 700 words, photos.

FILM-THE LAST FIVE YEARS - Like everyone starting out in musical theater, Jeremy Jordan had a song from "The Last Five Years" ready to go in his back pocket for auditions. Now, years later, he's starring in the first film adaptation of the beloved show. SENT: 680 words, photos.


STROKE-BRAIN STENTS (HOLD FOR RELEASE, noon) - Stroke experts are reporting a major advance: Stents similar to the ones used to open clogged heart arteries also can be used to clear a blood clot in the brain, greatly lowering the risk a patient will end up disabled. UPCOMING: 800 words, photo, video. HOLD FOR RELEASE AT 1700 GMT.


FROZEN ZOO - Animals on ice: Research at 'Frozen Zoo' gene bank aims to resurrect near extinct species. SENT: 810 words, photos, video.


ARCTIC OCEAN-NO LEASES - A plateau on the Arctic Ocean floor, where thousands of Pacific walrus gather to feed and raise pups, has received new protections from the Obama administration that recognize it as a biological hot spot and mark it off-limits to future oil drilling.SENT: 477 words, photo.

EUROPE-RECOVERING ECONOMY - With all the noise and uncertainty surrounding Greece, it's been easy to overlook a positive trend for Europe - the economic outlook is brightening. SENT: 880 words, photos.

GREECE-BAILOUT - Greece's new government heads for clash at meeting with eurozone creditors over easing bailout. SENT: 500 words, photos. UPCOMING: Developing.

MEXICO-OIL WOES - The oil price slump couldn't have come at a worse time for Mexico, which recently opened its energy sector to private investment in hopes of reversing a decade-long decline in crude production. SENT: 1,050 words, photo.


BRITAIN-DRIVERLESS CARS - Britain has begun testing driverless cars in four cities, launching the first official trials ahead of a series of planned rule reviews to accommodate the new technology. SENT: 250 words.

DIGITAL LIFE-REVIEW-MICROSOFT OFFICE - Just as I'm warming up to getting Microsoft Office through a recurring subscription rather than a one-time purchase, Microsoft is making a lot of a subscription's benefits available for free. By Anick Jesdanun. UPCOMING: 700 words by noon, photos.

PRESIDENTIAL RACE-BUSH - A day after apologizing for making insensitive remarks on Twitter, the technology chief of Jeb Bush's presidential campaign-in-waiting has resigned. SENT: 300 words.


PAKISTAN-CHRISTIANS IN SHADOWS-PHOTO ESSAY - AP photographer Muhammed Muheisen profiles Christians living in a slum outside of Pakistan's capital, many of whom earlier fled Islamabad over fears of being targeted in a rise of blasphemy allegations against minorities in this Muslim country. SENT: 450 words, photos.