Update on the latest news, sports, business and entertainment at 10:20 p.m. EST

November 11, 2017 - 12:00 am


The Latest: Trump offers to mediate on South China Sea

HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — President Donald Trump is offering to serve as a mediator on the South China Sea territorial disputes as he meets with the president of Vietnam.

Trump is telling President Tran Dai Quang he knows Vietnam has had a dispute with China over the strategic waterways.

Trump says he's a "very good mediator and a very good arbitrator" and willing to help.

Trump was speaking to Quang at the start of their meetings in Hanoi. Trump says North Korea "continues to be a problem" and he's hopeful that Chinese President Xi Jinping will "be a tremendous help." Trump says he also hopes that Russia will "be a tremendous help."

Trump says they'll also talk about trade. He says the U.S. will "be treated fairly," adding, "past administrations didn't understand trade."



US cities, states, businesses still back Paris climate deal

BONN, Germany (AP) — A group of U.S. states, cities, businesses and universities say they are still committed to curbing global warming even as the Trump administration is walking away from the Paris climate accord.

But the alliance, which together has an economy larger than Japan and Germany combined, says it won't be able to achieve the necessary cut in emissions of greenhouse gases without some efforts at the federal level.

Speaking at a global climate meeting in Bonn, Germany, former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg said Saturday that "U.S. citizens, states and businesses remain committed to the Paris agreement."

The group calling itself 'America's Pledge' said states, cities and private groups have been taking considerable steps to reduce emissions by promoting renewable energy and climate-friendly transportation systems.


Lawmakers question whether key CIA nominee misled Congress

WASHINGTON (AP) — Two former CIA employees are accusing the Trump administration's choice for CIA watchdog of being less than candid when he told Congress he didn't know about any active whistleblower complaints against him.

Members of the Senate Intelligence Committee asked the CIA's acting inspector general about complaints he and other managers retaliated against employees who alerted Congress and other authorities about alleged misconduct in the office.

Christopher Sharpley said he wasn't aware of any open investigations against him.

The CIA is defending his nomination, which the committee is still considering.

Two senators — Republican Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Democrat Ron Wyden of Oregon — say they find it hard to believe Sharpley didn't know.

They say the Homeland Security Department's watchdog has asked to interview Sharpley about one open complaint.


George Takei accused of groping struggling model in 1980s

NEW YORK (AP) — "Star Trek" actor George Takei has denied he groped a model-actor in 1981.

Takei said Saturday on Twitter that events described in an interview with Scott R. Brunton "simply did not occur."

Brunton told The Hollywood Reporter he was living in Hollywood when he met Takei at a bar. They exchanged numbers, he said, and then Takei invited him out and back to his condo after Brunton broke up with a boyfriend.

Brunton said he "must have passed out" after a drink, awaking to Takei groping him.

An audio clip surfaced from Takei's October appearance on Howard Stern's radio show where the two talked about Harvey Weinstein allegations. Stern asked Takei if he's ever grabbed anyone's genitals against their will. Takei was silent, said "uh oh" and then began laughing.


Australia's croc hunter is unlikely gay-rights champion

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — A self-described straight crocodile hunter from Australia's socially conservative north will cut short a United Nations assignment in New York to lead reform in his homeland if Australians vote to legalize gay marriage.

Conservative government lawmaker Warren Entsch says he will present to Parliament a bill to allow same-sex couples to marry if a national postal survey reveals on Wednesday that most respondents favor marriage equality.

Rights advocates have lauded the 67-year-old as an unlikely leading agitator in conservative politics for gays achieving equality.

Entsch says with opinion polls in recent years showing most Australians support gay marriage, no one should accept the result of the postal survey if the answer is "no."


The Latest: 2 Texas church shooting victims buried

SUTHERLAND SPRINGS, Texas (AP) — White hearses slowly drove into a small cemetery carrying a married couple who were among the more than two dozen people killed during last weekend's mass shooting inside a Texas church.

Dozens of vehicles followed in a procession Saturday evening after the funeral for Therese and Richard Rodriguez.

The procession didn't go by First Baptist Church, the site of the Sunday shooting. Instead, mourners drove around the tiny community of Sutherland Springs before arriving at the cemetery on the edge of town.

Other vehicles were parked around the cemetery along a rural road. First responders and sheriff's SUVs were parked at the three entrances to shield mourners and help direct traffic.

Relatives say Therese and Richard Rodriguez had been married for about a decade and had recently retired.


Tiny Texas town turns inward in wake of mass shooting

SUTHERLAND SPRINGS, Texas (AP) — The people of Sutherland Springs haven't held a news conference or appeared on network morning television shows since last weekend's mass shooting at a local church that killed more than two dozen people and wounded many others.

Although they've been polite to the media, they're not exactly forthcoming. Instead, residents of the rural Texas community are turning to the one thing that has buoyed them in good times and sustains them now: an unshakeable faith in God.

David Colbath, who was injured but survived Devin Patrick Kelley's rampage at the First Baptist Church, held Bible study from his hospital bed. Judy Green, a church member who avoided the carnage because she and her husband were running an errand, sought counseling at another church.

There have been no fewer than three prayer vigils for the victims. And on Sunday, residents will worship in the town's community center, which is next door to the church and was part of the crime scene for several days.


Thousands demand release of jailed separatists in Barcelona

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Thousands of people backing Catalonia's bid to secede from Spain are rallying in downtown Barcelona to demand the release of jailed separatist leaders.

The rally's grassroots organizers are calling for 10 prominent members of the secessionist movement in the northeastern Spanish region to be freed from prison.

Eight former members of Catalonia's dissolved Cabinet and two activists are in jail while investigations continue into their alleged roles in promoting an illegal declaration of independence last month.

Polls show that Catalonia's 7.5 million residents are roughly split over remaining a part of Spain.

Spain's Constitution says the nation is "indivisible" and that questions of national sovereignty pertain to the national Parliament in Madrid.


Moore's Senate race brings back memories of late GOP fumbles

ALABASTER, Ala. (AP) — Allegations of sexual misconduct against Republican candidate Roy Moore lift — though hardly guarantee — Democrat Doug Jones' hopes of winning the state's special election on Dec. 12.

The sexually charged nature of the allegations, resounding condemnation by national Republicans, and defiance by Moore and his supporters gave a once good bet for Republicans an eerie resemblance to races the party has blown in other GOP-heavy states.

In 2012, Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin's suggestion that "legitimate rape" rarely caused pregnancy cost him a victory. That same year, Indiana Republican Richard Mourdock lost a Senate race after saying that when a woman becomes pregnant after a rape, "it's something God intended."

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has warned fellow Republicans about picking nominees who couldn't win general elections.


AP Interview: UN food chief says to end hunger, end conflict

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The head of the U.N. food agency is telling world leaders that the only way to end global hunger is to end conflicts, which would also free up billions of dollars to build roads and infrastructure and promote economic growth in all developing countries.

David Beasley said in an interview with The Associated Press this week that 19 countries are in "protracted conflict" — which is "more conflict than we've ever had" — and 80 percent of the World Food Program's funds are going into conflict regions.

For many years, he said, the number of people facing extreme hunger fell despite the increase in global population, but in the last few years the number of extremely hungry people increased from 777 million to 815 million — "because of man-made conflict."

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