AP News Summary at 4:47 a.m. EDT

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The Latest | Israeli airstrikes on Rafah kill at least 22 people, Palestinian health officials say

Palestinian health officials say Israeli airstrikes on the southern Gaza city of Rafah have killed at least 22 people, including six women and five children. One of the children killed in the strikes overnight into Monday was just 5 days old. Israel has regularly carried out airstrikes on Rafah since the start of the war and has threatened to send in ground troops, saying Rafah is the last major Hamas stronghold in the coastal enclave. Over a million Palestinians have sought refuge in the city on the Egyptian border. The U.S. and others have urged Israel not to invade, fearing a humanitarian catastrophe. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday begins his seventh diplomatic mission to the Middle East since the Israel-Hamas war began in October.

Demonstrations roil US campuses ahead of graduations as protesters spar over Gaza conflict

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Protests are roiling college campuses across the U.S. as upcoming graduation ceremonies are threatened by disruptive demonstrators, with students and others sparring over Israel’s military offensive in Gaza and its mounting death toll. Many campuses were largely quiet over the weekend as demonstrators stayed by tents erected as protest headquarters, although a few colleges saw forced removals and arrests. Many students are demanding universities cut financial ties with Israel over its operation in Gaza. About 275 people were arrested on Saturday at campuses including Indiana University at Bloomington, Arizona State University and Washington University in St. Louis, pushing the number of arrests nationwide to nearly 900 since April 18.

How Columbia University’s complex history with the student protest movement echoes into today

NEW YORK (AP) — Students protested what they saw as injustice and demanded change. Administrators were under pressure to get things back to normal. Police came onto the Columbia University campus and made arrests. This wasn’t this month — it was April 1968. The week-long protest that included building takeovers left a legacy at Columbia, one that inspired future generations including the current one. And it’s a historical connection that many Columbia students involved in this month’s protests are acutely aware of. Says one: It’s history repeating itself.

Blinken is back in the Middle East this week. He has his work cut out for him

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is beginning his seventh diplomatic mission to the Middle East since the Israel-Hamas war began more than six months ago. He has a lot he’ll try to accomplish during stops in Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Israel this week. Blinken will talk to leaders about the negotiations for a ceasefire in Gaza and the return of Israeli hostages taken during Hamas’ Oct. 7 attacks. He also will reiterate the Biden administration’s opposition to an Israeli offensive on the southern Gaza city of Rafah, its push for expanded aid to civilians and the creation of a Palestinian state. It comes as the conflict has created potential problems for President Joe Biden in an election year.

Oklahoma towns hard hit by tornadoes begin long cleanup after 4 killed in weekend storms

SULPHUR, Okla. (AP) — Small towns in Oklahoma are beginning a long cleanup after tornadoes flattened home and buildings and killed at least four people, including an infant. The damage Monday was extensive in the community of Sulphur, where a weekend tornado crumpled many downtown buildings and sheared the roofs off houses across a 15-block radius. The Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management said hospitals across the state reported about 100 injuries, including people apparently cut or struck by debris. White House officials said President Joe Biden spoke to Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt on Sunday and offered the full support of the federal government.

Spain is in suspense waiting for Pedro Sánchez to say whether he will resign or stay in office

MADRID (AP) — Spain is in suspense as it waits for Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez to announce whether he will continue in office or leave. Sánchez shocked the country last week when he said he was taking five days off to think about his future after a court opened preliminary proceedings against his wife on corruption allegations. The legal complaint against his wife Begoña Gómez was filed by a well-known far right-wing legal platform that says Gómez used her position to influence business deals. The Clean Hands group admitted the complaint was based on newspaper articles. Spanish prosecutors say it should be thrown out. But Sánchez said it was too personal an attack on his family and he needed time to decide his priorities.

Have you heard the one about Trump? Biden tries humor on the campaign trail

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is out to win some votes by scoring some laughs at the expense of Donald Trump. Biden is using mockery with the goal of getting under Trump’s skin and reminding the country of Trump’s blunders. Like a comic honing his routine, the Democratic president has been testing and expanding his jokes over the past few weeks. It started with jabs about his Republican opponent’s financial problems, and now Biden regularly jeers Trump’s coiffed hair, his pampered upbringing and much more. The jokes are the latest attempt to crack the code on how to clap back at Trump, whose own schtick has redrawn the boundaries of what’s acceptable in modern politics.

Putin likely didn’t order death of Russian opposition leader Navalny, US official says

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. intelligence officials have determined that Russian President Vladimir Putin likely didn’t order the death of imprisoned opposition leader Alexei Navalny in February. An official says the U.S. intelligence community has found “no smoking gun” that Putin was aware of the timing of Navalny’s death or directly ordered it. The official says it’s believed Putin was ultimately responsible for the death of Navalny, who endured brutal conditions during his confinement. The official spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the sensitive matter. Navalny was Russia’s best-known opposition politician and died while serving a 19-year sentence on extremism charges that he called politically motivated. A month later, Putin won reelection.

Millions of Afghans made Pakistan home to escape war. Now many are hiding to escape deportation

KARACHI, Pakistan (AP) — For more than 1 million Afghans who fled war and poverty to Pakistan, these are uncertain times. Since Pakistan announced a crackdown on migrants last year, some 600,000 have been deported and at least a million remain in Pakistan in hiding. They’ve retreated from public view, abandoning their jobs and rarely leaving their neighborhoods out of fear they could be next. It’s harder for them to earn money, rent accommodation, buy food or get medical help because they run the risk of getting caught by police or being reported to authorities by Pakistanis. Others pay smugglers to get them back into Pakistan, the only home they’ve known.

Horses show off in Versailles, keeping alive royal tradition on soon-to-be Olympic equestrian venue

VERSAILLES, France (AP) — The historic Versailles Palace Gardens will soon host the Paris Olympics equestrian sports. Meanwhile, the select number of riders of the National Equestrian Academy handling the palace’s famed royal stables continue to care for their beloved horses. The elite academy — founded by French horse trainer and impresario Bartabas who decided to revive the splendid building in 2003 — has only 12 riders. After years of hard work, they take part in a prestigious show at the Great Stables of Versailles every weekend to the delight of spectators. Though not participating in the games, they look forward to seeing Olympic riders galloping in the Versailles gardens.…Read more by AP


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