Ukraine alleges torture at village near Russian border
KOZACHA LOPAN, Ukraine (AP) — In a dank basement behind the local supermarket, metal bars cordon off a corner of the room to form a large cell. Dirty sleeping bags and duvets show three sleeping spots on top of sheets of Styrofoam for insulation from the damp earth floor. In the corner, two black buckets served as toilets. Ukrainian authorities say this was a makeshift prison where Russian forces abused detainees before Ukrainian troops swept through Kozacha Lopan in a major counteroffensive in the Kharkiv region this month. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has said more than 10 such “torture chambers” have been discovered in the region since the hasty withdrawal of Russian troops last week. The claims could not be immediately verified independently.
World leaders head to London for Queen Elizabeth II funeral
LONDON (AP) — Thousands of police, hundreds of British troops and an army of officials are making final preparations for the state funeral of Queen Elizabeth II. The funeral on Monday will be a spectacular display of national mourning, and the biggest gathering of world leaders for years. U.S. President Joe Biden and other leaders have been arriving in London and signing a condolences book. Despite the cold weather and long waits, thousands of people kept lining up Sunday to file past the queen’s coffin as it lies in state at Westminster Hall. Authorities are expected to close that massive queue sometime Sunday. King Charles III was holding a reception for heads of state and other leaders Sunday evening at Buckingham Palace.
Queen paved the way for transition to Charles in final years
LONDON (AP) — In retrospect, it seems Queen Elizabeth II was preparing us all along for her death. Whether it was due to age, ill health or a sense that the end was near, she spent much of the last two years tying up loose ends, making sure the family firm would keep ticking along. The transition began slowly, with the queen turning over more public duties to her son, now King Charles III. But it moved into overdrive in 2022 as Elizabeth celebrated 70 years on the throne. First she expressed her wish that Charles’ wife, Camilla, be known as queen consort after her death. Then Charles took center stage during Platinum Jubilee festivities.
Biden warns US democracy threatened, but how can he save it?
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is finding it’s easier to call out attacks on democracy than it is to stop them. His fundamental rationale for running for president was that America’s democratic traditions were in jeopardy. Now, 20 months into his presidency, the dangers are worse, Biden’s warnings are more dire — and the limits of his own ability to fix the problem are clearer. That’s because former President Donald Trump continues to stoke the baseless claim that the 2020 election was stolen even though the falsehood has been rejected by dozens of courts and his own attorney general.
They ended wanted pregnancies. Post-Roe, they face new pain.
Ashley Lefebvre hugs her unborn daughter’s urn each night. Sarah Halsey treasures the tiny hat worn by her baby who lived just 38 minutes. Abi Frazier lives in a new home because she couldn’t bear to return to the one with the furnished nursery and empty crib. All ended wanted pregnancies because of grave fetal medical problems. Such seldom discussed abortions are different from the most common type performed early in an unwanted pregnancy. For many who have endured them, the abortion debate since Roe’s reversal has unleashed a torrent of pain — and also brought them together to support each other, speak out and share their stories.
Once McCain’s party, Arizona GOP returns to far-right roots
PHOENIX (AP) — The far-right forces that former Sen. John McCain successfully marginalized within the Arizona Republican Party are back and in full control, with profound implications for one of the nation’s most closely matched battlegrounds. This summer’s primary elections made clear that Arizona Republicans have traded McCain for Donald Trump, backing a slate of far-right candidates aligned with the former president. After she won the Republican primary for governor in early August, former television news anchor Kari Lake said GOP voters “drove a stake in the heart of the McCain machine.” Mainstream conservatives have been sidelined and even censured by the party.
Fiona becomes a hurricane, aims at Puerto Rico
HAVANA (AP) — Fiona has strengthened into a hurricane as Puerto Ricans brace for severe wind and torrential rain, with the storm forecast to strike the U.S. territory’s southwest coast. Forecasters say “historic” levels of rain are expected to produce landslides and heavy flooding, with up to 25 inches forecast in isolated areas. Fiona on Sunday will be lashing cities and towns in a part of Puerto Rico that is still recovering from a string of strong earthquakes and Hurricane Maria, a Category 4 storm that caused deaths and destruction across the island in 2017.
New model to enlist regular Americans to resettle refugees
SAN DIEGO (AP) — With refugee resettlement agencies overwhelmed after being gutted by the Trump administration, thousands of Americans heeded the call to help Afghans restart their lives in far-flung towns across the United States with little to no immigrant populations. Now the Biden administration is expected to turn the experiment into a permanent program that will allow everyday Americans to resettle people displaced from a slew of countries. Experts say the private sponsorship model could transform the way America resettles refugees and ensure the doors remain open no matter who is elected to office.
Funeral of Queen Elizabeth II is huge security challenge
LONDON (AP) — London Mayor Sadiq Khan says Monday’s state funeral for Queen Elizabeth II is an “unprecedented” security challenge. Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to pack central London for an service attend by 500 emperors, kings, queens, presidents, prime ministers and other leaders from around the world. London’s Metropolitan Police says the “hugely complex” policing operation is the biggest in the force’s history, surpassing the London 2012 Olympics. More than 10,000 police officers will be on duty Monday, with London bobbies supplemented by reinforcements from all of Britain’s 43 police forces. The operation will also involve police spotters on rooftops, sniffer dogs on the streets, marine officers on the River Thames and mounted police on horseback.
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