AP

U.S.-born panda Bao Bao lands in China from D.C.

BEIJING (AP) — An American-born panda started settling into her new home Thursday in southwest China where she will eventually join a breeding program.

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Homeland Security chief: No military for deportations

MEXICO CITY — Seeking to tamp down growing unease in Latin America, U.S. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly pledged Thursday the United States won’t enlist its military to enforce immigration laws and that there will be “no mass deportations.”

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Justice crackdown on pot expected

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department will step up enforcement of federal law against recreational marijuana, White House spokesman Sean Spicer said Thursday, offering the Trump administration’s strongest indication to date of a looming crackdown on the drug, even as a solid majority of Americans believe it should be legal.

Protesters cleared from Dakota Access camp

CANNON BALL, N.D. — Authorities on Thursday cleared a protest camp where opponents of the Dakota Access oil pipeline had gathered for the better part of a year, searching tents and huts and arresting dozens of holdouts who had defied a government order to leave.

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At CPAC, Conservatives urged not to squander Trump’s presidency

OXON HILL, Md. — President Donald Trump’s vice president and top aides delivered one overriding message Thursday to the thousands of conservative activists gathered for their annual conference outside of Washington: Don’t blow it.

AP

Anaheim Mayor ‘deeply disturbed’ over police incident

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Anaheim officials pressed for calm Thursday after a night of raucous protests that followed an incident in which an off-duty policeman scuffled in his front yard with a boy, drew a weapon and fired a shot into the ground after another teen pushed him over a hedge and others surrounded him.

AP

Mass slaughter in Brazil prison exposes gang war

MANAUS, Brazil — Shortly after midnight on New Year’s Eve, hundreds of inmates watched from a Manaus prison yard as the sky lit up with fireworks, paid for by the gangs that dominate the jail system.

AP

Trump sends aides to Mexico amid deep strains

MEXICO CITY — President Donald Trump dispatched his top diplomat and homeland security chief to Mexico on Wednesday on a fence-mending mission complicated by the actual fence he wants to build on the southern border. Mexico’s government signaled it was in no mood to be lectured by the new U.S. administration.

Conservative activists welcome president with delight, wariness

WASHINGTON — For the past eight years, thousands of conservative activists have descended on Washington each spring with dreams of putting a Republican in the White House.

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As China ups heat on N. Korea, U.S. faces questions

WASHINGTON — China’s surprising suspension of North Korean coal imports puts pressure not only on Pyongyang, but also on President Donald Trump. The question for him: Should the U.S. respond with new North Korea negotiations?

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Emails: EPA’s Pruitt cozy with fossil fuel industry

WASHINGTON — While serving as Oklahoma’s attorney general, new Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt coordinated closely with fossil-fuel companies and special interest groups working to undermine federal efforts to curb planet-warming carbon emissions, newly released emails show.

Documents: Roof targeted second black church after shooting

COLUMBIA, S.C. — The man convicted of killing nine worshippers during Bible study at a black church in 2015 drove toward a second black parish afterward, according to federal court documents unsealed Tuesday, but no one was there because that sanctuary’s class had been canceled.

AP

Fearing deportation, immigrants plan ahead

In Orange County, California, dozens of immigrant parents have signed legal documents authorizing friends and relatives to pick up their children from school and access their bank accounts to pay their bills in the event they are arrested by immigration agents.

AP

San Jose mayor admits failures in order for flood evacuation

SAN JOSE, Calif. — The mayor of San Jose acknowledged that the city failed to properly notify residents to evacuate during a flood emergency early Wednesday when some people said they got their first notice by seeing firefighters in boats in the neighborhood.

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White House lifts transgender bathroom guidance

WASHINGTON — Transgender students on Wednesday lost federal protections that allowed them to use school bathrooms and locker rooms matching their gender identities, as the Trump administration stepped into a long-simmering national debate.

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AP

Most oil pipeline opponents leave protest camp

CANNON BALL, N.D. — Most of the Dakota Access pipeline opponents abandoned their protest camp Wednesday ahead of a government deadline to get off the federal land, and authorities moved to arrest some who defied the order in a final show of dissent.

Supreme Court orders new hearing for black Texas inmate

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered a new court hearing for a black Texas prison inmate whose death sentence may have been tainted by disturbing references to race.

AP

Seven Earth-size worlds found orbiting star

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — For the first time, astronomers have discovered seven Earth-size planets orbiting a single nearby star — and these new worlds could hold life.

Justices divided on boy’s death near border

WASHINGTON — Examining a tragic shooting death on the U.S. border with Mexico, a divided Supreme Court on Tuesday puzzled over the rights of foreigners to sue in American courts.

AP

Hundreds rescued from San Jose flooding

SAN JOSE, Calif. — Rescuers chest-deep in water steered boats full of people, some with babies and pets, from a San Jose neighborhood inundated Tuesday by water from an overflowing creek.

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AP

Yiannopoulos makes apology, quits Breitbart

NEW YORK — Polarizing right-wing writer Milo Yiannopoulos was by turns apologetic for comments he made about sexual relationships between boys and men and adamant he had been the subject of “a cynical media witch hunt” on Tuesday as he spoke after resigning as an editor at Breitbart News.

AP

Insurance premium hike shows gap

WASHINGTON — Michael Schwarz is a self-employed business owner who buys his own health insurance. Subsidized coverage through “Obamacare” offers protection from life’s unpredictable changes and freedom to pursue his vocation, he says.

AP

Former extremists help others quit hatred

ATHENS, Ga. — The Celtic cross tattoo on Shannon Martinez’s leg gives away her past. A victim of sexual assault at age 14 and never quite able to meet her parents’ expectations, Martinez sought out other angry teens.

Trump denounces anti-Semitism

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Tuesday condemned recent threats against Jewish community centers in the U.S. as “painful reminders” of lingering prejudice and evil, his first full-throated comments on the rise of anti-Semitic venom after pressure for him to speak out forcefully.

More migrants seek to naturalize

LOS ANGELES — Andres Dorantes has long been content with the green card that lets him live in the U.S. and work as a tattoo artist in Los Angeles.

AP

Millions could be targeted for deportation

WASHINGTON — Millions of people living in the United States illegally could be targeted for deportation — including people simply arrested for traffic violations — under a sweeping rewrite of immigration enforcement policies announced Tuesday by the Trump administration.

AP

Bad season for olives in Italy leads to oil price shock

ROME — From specialty shops in Rome to supermarkets around the world, lovers of Italian olive oil are in for some sticker shock this year, with prices due to jump by as much as 20 percent.

AP

Israeli gets prison time in shooting

JERUSALEM — An Israeli soldier was sentenced Tuesday to 18 months in prison for killing a badly wounded Palestinian assailant as he lay on the ground, in a landmark decision that deepened fissures in Israeli society and drew Palestinian criticism for being too lenient.

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Soldier- scholar chosen for NSC

PALM BEACH, Fla. — President Donald Trump has tapped Army Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster, a prominent military strategist known as a creative thinker, as his new national security adviser, replacing the ousted Michael Flynn.

AP

Damage trails storms in San Antonio area

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Severe storms that pushed several tornadoes through parts of Central Texas ripped the roofs from homes and damaged dozens of other houses and apartments in San Antonio and toppled auto-carrier cars of a freight train near Austin, authorities said Monday.

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U.S. bishops join in denouncing ‘Santa Muerte’

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Bishops in the United States are denouncing the skeleton folk saint known as La Santa Muerte — a figure Roman Catholic leaders in Mexico routinely have attacked for the deity’s connection to violence and the illicit drug trade.

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Private planes gain ground at colleges

BOSTON — Once seen as a luxury of the corporate world, private planes are becoming increasingly common at U.S. colleges and universities as schools try to attract athletes, raise money and reward coaches with jet-set vacations.

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Yiannopoulos speech canceled

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Right-wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos has been disinvited to this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference after his attempt to clarify past comments on relationships between boys and older men fell flat with organizers.

Drugs go AWOL at VA sites

WASHINGTON — Federal authorities are stepping up investigations at Department of Veterans Affairs medical centers due to a sharp increase in opioid theft, missing prescriptions or unauthorized drug use by VA employees since 2009, according to government data obtained by The Associated Press.

AP

For Trump, business of legislating ahead

WASHINGTON — As President Donald Trump begins his second month in office, his team is trying to move past the crush of controversies that overtook his first month and make progress on health care and tax overhauls long sought by Republicans.

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Adios, Bao Bao

WASHINGTON — The National Zoo is packing up its American-born panda cub Bao Bao for a one-way flight to China, where the 3-year-old eventually will join a panda breeding program.

AP

Pence aims to reassure rattled European leaders

BRUSSELS — U.S. Vice President Mike Pence on Monday vowed to stand with the European Union and the NATO military alliance, but he was met with some skepticism from leaders shaken by President Donald Trump’s more critical comments.

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Russia’s ambassador to U.N. falls ill, dies

NEW YORK — Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations, a veteran diplomat known as a potent, savvy yet personable voice for his country’s interests who could both spar and get along with his Western counterparts, died suddenly Monday after falling ill in his office at Russia’s U.N. mission.

N. Korean envoy criticizes probe

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — North Korea’s ambassador to Malaysia denounced the country’s investigation into the death of the exiled half-brother of North Korea’s ruler, calling it politically motivated and demanding a joint probe amid increasingly bitter exchanges between the once-friendly nations.

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AP

Tillerson avoids the spotlight

WASHINGTON — When North Korea fired a ballistic missile into waters between South Korea and Japan, President Donald Trump moved quickly to show U.S. resolve. He appeared within hours alongside visiting Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and said the U.S. “stands behind Japan, its great ally, 100 percent.”

Tribes hope ‘America first’ helps first Americans

BOSTON — Native Americans hope President Donald Trump doesn’t forget America’s first inhabitants as he promises to put “America first.” Tribes have been reaching out to the Republican administration since it took office last month, saying they’re ready to help it meet its campaign promises of improving the economy and creating more jobs for Americans.

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