AAA  Aug. 19, 2014 4:44 AM ET
AP Top News at 4:44 a.m. EDT
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Police, protesters collide again in Ferguson

FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — The National Guard arrived in Ferguson but kept its distance from the streets where protesters clashed again with police, as clouds of tear gas and smoke hung over the St. Louis suburb where Michael Brown was fatally shot by a police officer. Protesters filled the streets after nightfall Monday, and officers trying to enforce tighter restrictions at times used bullhorns to order them to disperse. Police deployed noisemakers and armored vehicles to push demonstrators back. Officers fired tear gas and flash grenades.

Police mistrust still prevalent years later

WASHINGTON (AP) — For one night, all was well in Ferguson, Missouri. After a change in police command, violent protests decrying the shooting death of unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown at the hands of white police officer Darren Wilson suddenly gave way to peaceful demonstrations. A day later, Ferguson police, under pressure to disclose Wilson's name, also revealed that Brown was suspected of stealing cigars from a local store before his deadly encounter with Wilson. That announcement was met with disbelief and anger by several residents, who said police were trying to smear Brown's name to justify his shooting.

Obama struggles to find his role after Brown death

WASHINGTON (AP) — When racial tensions erupted midway through his first presidential campaign, Barack Obama came to Philadelphia to decry the "racial stalemate we've been stuck in for years." Over time, he said, such wounds, rooted in America's painful history on race, can be healed. Six years later, the stalemate suddenly seems more entrenched than ever. As Obama pleads for calm and understanding in Ferguson, Missouri, he's struggling to determine what role — if any — the nation's first black president can play in defusing a crisis that has laid bare the profound sense of injustice felt by African-Americans across the country.

Israelis, Palestinians resume talks on Gaza deal

CAIRO (AP) — Palestinian and Israeli negotiators in Cairo resumed indirect talks on Tuesday, trying to hammer out a roadmap for the war-torn Gaza Strip after Egypt announced a 24-hour extension of the cease-fire to allow more time for negotiations. The extension of the truce fanned hopes of an emerging deal, however vague, though wide gaps remain on key issues, including Israel's blockade of Gaza, its demands for disarmament of the Islamic militant group Hamas and Palestinian demands for a Gaza sea port and an airport.

Obama: Iraq forces retake Mosul Dam from militants

BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraqi and Kurdish forces recaptured Iraq's largest dam from Islamic militants Monday following dozens of U.S. airstrikes, President Barack Obama said, in the first major defeat for the extremists since they swept across the country this summer. Militants from the Islamic State group had seized the Mosul Dam on Aug. 7, giving them access and control of enormous power and water reserves and threatening to deny those resources to much of Iraq.

Syria strikes militants as US targets them in Iraq

BEIRUT (AP) — As the U.S. military strikes the Islamic State group in Iraq, Syrian President Bashar Assad's forces have significantly stepped up their own campaign against militant strongholds in Syria, carrying out dozens of airstrikes against the group's headquarters in the past two days. While the government in Damascus has long turned a blind eye to the Islamic State's expansion in Syria — in some cases even facilitating its offensive against mainstream rebels — the group's rapid march on towns and villages in northern and eastern Syria is now threatening to overturn recent gains by government forces.

New report warns of anti-aircraft weapons in Syria

WASHINGTON (AP) — Armed groups in Syria have an estimated several hundred portable anti-aircraft missiles that could easily be diverted to extremists and used to destroy low-flying commercial planes, according to a new report by a respected international research group. It cites the risk that the missiles could be smuggled out of Syria by terrorists. The report was released just hours after the Federal Aviation Administration issued a notice Monday to U.S. airlines banning all flights in Syrian airspace. The agency said armed extremists in Syria are "known to be equipped with a variety of anti-aircraft weapons which have the capability to threaten civilian aircraft." The agency had previously warned against flights over Syria, but had not prohibited them.

Ukraine: Dozens killed in shelling of convoy

KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukraine accused pro-Russia separatists of killing dozens of civilians in an attack early Monday on a convoy fleeing a besieged rebel-held city. The rebels denied any attack took place, while the U.S. confirmed the shelling of the convoy but said it did not know who was responsible. The refugees were attacked with Grad rockets and other weapons imported from Russia as their convoy traveled on the main road leading from Russia to the rebel-held city of Luhansk, Col. Andriy Lysenko, a spokesman for Ukraine's National Security Council, told reporters.

Militias complicate situation on Texas border

MISSION, Texas (AP) — On a recent moonlit night, Border Patrol agents began rounding up eight immigrants hiding in and around a canal near the Rio Grande. A state trooper soon arrived to help. Then out of the darkness emerged seven more armed men in fatigues. Agents assumed the camouflaged crew that joined in pulling the immigrants from the canal's milky green waters was a tactical unit from the Texas Department of Public Safety. Only later did they learn that the men belonged to the Texas Militia, a group that dresses like a SWAT team and carries weapons but has no law-enforcement training or authority of any kind.

Ex-NFL lineman tops bill for Pyongyang fight night

TOKYO (AP) — Former NFL player Bob "The Beast" Sapp isn't exactly a household name back home in the United States. But he's big in Japan. Very big. And soon he hopes to be living large — for a week, anyway — in North Korea. Shades of Dennis Rodman, anyone?

Associated Press
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