Update on the latest news, sports, business and entertainment at 11:20 p.m. EDT

June 19, 2018 - 12:00 am


The Latest: Sanford says he's confused by Trump's jab at him

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congressman Mark Sanford tells The Associated Press that he's confused by President Donald Trump's latest attack on him, but glad his colleagues showed displeasure at Trump's broadside.

At a closed-door meeting Tuesday on immigration with House Republicans, participants say Trump sarcastically congratulated the South Carolina Republican for a "great race." Sanford lost his GOP primary last week after Trump urged voters to dump him. Republicans present say there were hushed boos in a show of support for Sanford, who was absent.

Sanford says he "finds some solace" in the boos, which he says friends described to him. He says it's "startling" Trump would raise "some perceived personal slight" during a meeting on a serious topic.

The people described the meeting on condition of anonymity because the session was private.


Youngest migrants held in 'tender age' shelters

The influx of child immigrants in response to the Trump administration's zero-tolerance enforcement policy has prompted authorities to open at least three "tender-age" shelters in South Texas.

There are plans to open a fourth shelter to house hundreds of young migrant children in Houston, where city leaders denounced the move Tuesday.

The Associated Press has learned the locations of three child shelters in Texas' Rio Grande Valley, in Combes, Raymondville and Brownsville. They have been rapidly repurposed to serve needs of children including some under 5. Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner says the location in his city would house up to 240 children in a warehouse previously used for people displaced by Hurricane Harvey.

Lawyers and medical providers who have visited the Rio Grande Valley shelters described play rooms of crying preschool-age children in crisis.


'Don't leave me, Mom': Detainee tells of separation from son

SEATTLE (AP) — A Salvadoran mother says she hasn't spoken to her 8-year-old son in a month, since immigration officials separated them after they crossed the U.S.-Mexico border to seek asylum.

Blanca Orantes-Lopez is being detained at a federal prison south of Seattle while she pursues her asylum claim. She doesn't know when she'll see her son again. He's being kept nearly across the country in upstate New York.

She told her story to The Associated Press in a phone interview from the prison. It's emblematic of about 2,000 other cases in which President Donald Trump's administration has separated children from their parents amid a crackdown on illegal immigration.

She says that when officials took her son away, he cried, "Don't leave me, Mom."


North Korea's Xi thanks China for support with Trump summit

BEIJING (AP) — North Korean state media say the country's leader Kim Jong Un thanked Chinese President Xi Jinping for his support in last week's groundbreaking summit with President Donald Trump.

Kim was in Beijing on Wednesday during his third visit to China this year, underscoring the major improvement in relations between the communist neighbors.

A report by the Korean Central News Agency said Kim expressed his gratitude to Xi in a meeting on Tuesday, during which Xi "gave high appreciation and extended heartfelt congratulations" to Kim over the summit.

KCNA said that during a banquet hosted by Xi, Kim also said Pyongyang and Beijing are seeing their ties developing into "unprecedentedly special relations."

At the summit with Trump, Kim pledged to work toward denuclearization in exchange for U.S. security guarantees.


Canadian senate passes weed bill but legalization delayed

TORONTO (AP) — Canada's Senate has given final passage to the federal government's bill to legalize recreational cannabis, though Canadians will have to wait at least a few months to legally buy marijuana.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's government had hoped to make pot legal by July 1, but the government has said provincial and territorial governments will need eight to 12 weeks following Senate passage and royal assent to prepare for retail sales. Trudeau's Cabinet is expected to decide a legalization date in early or mid-September.

The law makes Canada the second country to have a nationwide, legal marijuana market, after Uruguay. Each province in Canada is coming up with rules for the sale of recreational pot.

The bill passed in the Senate by a vote of 52-29 on Tuesday.


The Latest: EU says it's committed to Human Rights Council

WASHINGTON (AP) — The European Union says the Trump administration's decision to pull the United States out of the U.N.-backed Human Rights Council "risks undermining the role of the U.S. as a champion and supporter of democracy on the world stage."

EU spokeswoman Maia Kocijancic says the 28-member bloc remains "steadfastly and reliably committed" to the 47-country Geneva body.

The EU says the United States has "always been at the forefront" of protection of human rights and has been a "strong partner" of the bloc at the council.

It says it shares the aim to make the council "more efficient," noting this year's 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The declaration was championed in part by former U.S. first lady Eleanor Roosevelt.


Indonesia raises number of ferry sinking missing to 166

TIGARAS PORT, Indonesia (AP) — Indonesian officials say 166 people are missing from a ferry sinking Monday evening at a popular lake on Sumatra, a much higher number than previously believed.

The boat didn't have a passenger manifest and disaster officials have several times raised the number of people it was carrying as distraught relatives who rushed to Lake Toba in northern Sumatra provided information. On Tuesday, officials said 94 people were missing and expected the number to rise.

Only 18 people were rescued and one death confirmed in the immediate response to the tragedy on Monday evening.

An Associated Press reporter on Wednesday morning saw rescuers transferring a body to an ambulance onshore.

Grief-stricken relatives urged officials to speed up the search effort.


120 Nassar victims urge Michigan State board to fire Engler

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A letter signed by at least 120 victims of former sports doctor Larry Nassar demands that Michigan State University's governing board remove interim school president John Engler.

The women and girls issued a statement Tuesday, days before the board of trustees' next meeting.

Engler, a former Michigan governor, is resisting pressure to resign after media reports that he sent emails to another university official criticizing lawyers for Nassar's sexual assault victims and suggesting the first woman to go public with her accusations was probably getting a "kickback" from her attorney.

In the statement, the "sister survivors" say that Engler "has only reinforced the culture of abuse at MSU." They say victims "should know they can raise their voice without being characterized as pawns too foolish to know they are manipulated."


Senator denied entry to see Florida child migrant facility

HOMESTEAD, Fla. (AP) — U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson has called it an "affront as the senior senator" from Florida after he was denied entry to survey a detention center for immigrant children in South Florida.

Nelson was turned back Tuesday along with another Florida Democrat, Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, when they sought a firsthand look at living conditions at a temporary shelter in Homestead for unaccompanied children who had arrived in the country illegally.

Nelson says he's angry to be denied entrance to a federally funded facility "where the lives and health of children are at stake."

President Donald Trump's immigration policies have caused an uproar following reports thousands of migrant children split from their families are being held in government-run facilities.


With eyes on midterms, Trump embraces immigration fight

WASHINGTON (AP) — Calling the shots as his West Wing clears out, President Donald Trump sees his hard-line immigration stance as a winning issue heading into a midterm election he views as a referendum on his protectionist policies.

Trump on Tuesday defended his administration's policy of separating families at the U.S.-Mexico border amid mounting criticism. The chorus of condemnation includes Democrats, as well as Republicans, who are increasingly worried that reports about bereft children taken from their parents could damage the GOP's chances in November.

Trump believes that his immigration pledges helped win him the presidency and that his base demands he deliver on them. White House officials say that as GOP lawmakers scramble to find a legislative fix, Trump is confident that immigration is a winning issue.

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