AP News Summary at 10:34 a.m. EDT | National

Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant loses external power

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukraine’s state nuclear operator said Russian missile attacks caused a crippled nuclear power plant to lose all external power for the second time in five days. Energoatom reported that the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant suffered a “power outage” on Wednesday morning when a missile damaged an electrical substation, causing the last source of electricity to be shut down in an emergency. power plant’s remaining external power supply. The loss of power increases the risk of a radioactive disaster because electricity is needed to cool nuclear reactors. Energoatom says diesel generators are powering the plant at the moment, but Russian troops blocked a convoy carrying extra fuel for emergency equipment. Meanwhile, Russia says eight people have been arrested for an explosion at a bridge linking Russia with Crimea.

Biden promises ‘consequences’ for Saudis after OPEC+ production cut

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden has said there will be “consequences” for Saudi Arabia as his administration begins to reassess the United States’ relationship with the kingdom. This is after the Riyadh-led OPEC+ alliance of oil-producing nations announced it would cut oil production. Biden said in a CNN interview on Tuesday that he was considering action against the Saudis, but declined to detail potential next steps. The OPEC+ production cut should help Russia replenish its coffers as it continues its nearly eight-month war in Ukraine. Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut and Representative Ro Khanna of California introduced legislation that would immediately suspend all US arms sales to Saudi Arabia.

To hold House, Democrats eye GOP-held districts won by Biden

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan congressional district that includes Grand Rapids hasn’t had a Democratic House member in decades. But the area has turned bluer in recent years, and new congressional maps have converted it from a district that backed Donald Trump for president in 2020 to one that Joe Biden would have carried instead. The district is just one of 14 nationwide that are held by Republicans but Biden would have won under new maps. As Democrats brace for medium-term losses that could cost them control of the House, they’re hoping the reversal of Republican-held districts can make up for lost ground elsewhere.

Protests galvanize Iranians abroad with hope, concern and unity

LONDON (AP) — As anti-government protests rock Iranian cities and towns for a fourth week, tens of thousands of Iranians living abroad marched through the streets of Europe, North America and beyond to support what many see as a watershed moment for their home country. From those who fled in the 1980s after the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran to a younger generation of Iranians born and raised in Western capitals, many members of the diaspora community say they feel a unity of purpose and a unprecedented affinity with protests at home over the death of a 22-year-old woman in the custody of Iranian vice squads. Many agree that these protests are different because they challenge the fundamental principles of the Islamic Republic.

LA council faces uncertainty amid furor over racist remarks

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Los Angeles City Council is mired in uncertainty. President Joe Biden is calling on three members to resign after a recording of them participating in a meeting was released in which racist language was used to mock their colleagues. Three current or former members have been charged or pleaded guilty to corruption charges. Resignations may create new vacancies. It is unclear whether the Council can muster the required 10 members – out of a total of 15 – to conduct business on Wednesday. Raphael Sonenshein – who heads the Pat Brown Institute for Public Affairs at California State University in Los Angeles – calls the situation chaotic.

FDA clears updated COVID boosters for children as young as 5

The United States is set to offer updated COVID-19 booster shots to children as young as 5 years old. The modified boosters were rolled out last month for Americans 12 and older — injections designed to target the omicron variants that are currently spreading. On Wednesday, the Food and Drug Administration authorized versions for children ages 5 to 11. One step remains: the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention must also sign. Officials hope to expand protection against an expected winter surge. The updated plans contain half the recipe that targeted the original strain of coronavirus and half the protection against the dominant BA.4 and BA.5 omicron versions.

EXPLAINER: What’s next in the Florida school shooter’s trial?

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — Jurors who will decide whether Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz is sentenced to death or life without parole are about to begin deliberations. The panel of seven men and five women are expected to begin discussions on Wednesday. They will determine whether Cruz, 24, should die for the 2018 murder of 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. For them to recommend a death penalty, they must agree unanimously. If a person votes for life, it will be his sentence. Prosecutors argued that Cruz committed an evil crime where death is the only appropriate punishment. Cruz’s attorneys argued that his biological mother’s heavy drinking caused him brain damage that set him on the path to murder.

The world’s first space tourist signs up for a flight around the Moon

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — The world’s first space tourist has signed up to orbit the moon aboard Elon Musk’s spacecraft. For Dennis Tito, it’s a chance to relive the joy of his journey 21 years ago to the International Space Station. Its week-long moonshot announced Wednesday will be years in the future. He’ll have company: his wife and 10 other people willing to shell out big bucks for the ride. Tito won’t say how much he’s paying this time. His flight to the Russian station cost $20 million. Tito is actually the second billionaire to make a Starship reservation for a flight to the moon. A Japanese fashion mogul has already signed up.

477 whales die in ‘heartbreaking’ strandings in New Zealand

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Some 477 pilot whales have died after washing up on two remote New Zealand beaches in recent days, officials say. None of the stranded whales could be refloated and all died naturally or were euthanized in “heartbreaking” loss. That’s according to Daren Grover, the chief executive of Project Jonah, a nonprofit group that helps save whales. The whales washed up on the Chatham Islands, home to around 600 people and located around 500 miles east of New Zealand’s main islands. Scientists aren’t exactly sure what causes the whales to run aground, though it seems their location systems could be confused by gently sloping sandy beaches.

MLB playoffs: Phillies, Dodgers take NLDS lead

Nick Castellanos and the Philadelphia Phillies can put the defending World Series champion Braves on the brink of elimination. Ditto for the Dodgers against rival Padres. Meanwhile, the Mariners and Guardians have a day to shake off heavy losses to the Astros and Yankees, respectively. The National League Division Series pitting the Phillies against the Braves and the Padres against the Dodgers are scheduled for their second games on Wednesday, while American League clubs get the day off. Castellanos carried a big load with his bat in a 7-6 Game 1 victory Tuesday against Atlanta. But despite driving in three races, his glove work was what really got people talking.

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