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Here is the latest news from The Associated Press at 6:40 p.m. EDT

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 4:42pm

Top Trump administration officials insist the president's proposed tax plan, which would slash corporate and individual tax rates, will not add to the deficit. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin (mih-NOO'-shin) told reporters at a White House briefing that the plan "will pay for itself with growth and with reduction of different deductions and closing loopholes."

The Latest: Venezuela says it's renouncing membership in OAS

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 4:37pm

The latest on the political crisis in Venezuela (all times local):


Trump team softens war talk, vows other pressure on NKorea

Matthew Pennington and Vivian Salama, Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 4:27pm

The Trump administration told lawmakers Wednesday it will apply economic and diplomatic pressure on North Korea to dismantle its nuclear weapons program, as an extraordinary White House briefing served to tamp down talk of military action against an unpredictable and increasingly dangerous U.S. adversary.

Russia arrests 12 suspected of terrorism involvement

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 3:36pm

Russia's main domestic security agency arrested 12 people in the Kaliningrad exclave for suspected involvement with an Islamic extremist group, Russian news agencies said late Wednesday.

The Latest: Trump makes brief stop in North Korea meeting

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 3:35pm

The Latest on tensions on the Korean Peninsula (all times local):

Venezuelan forces use tear gas to block latest protest march

Fabiola Sanchez and Joshua Goodman, Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 3:15pm

Thousands of protesters marched again in Venezuela's capital Wednesday, with the rejuvenated anti-government movement showing no sign of letting up on political unrest that has been blamed for 29 deaths in recent weeks.

Le Pen upstages Macron in battle for blue-collar votes

Chris Den Hond and John Leicester, Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 3:06pm

Far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen turned an appliance factory into a battleground Wednesday for France's blue-collar vote, upstaging rival Emmanuel Macron with a surprise campaign stop at the plant threatened with closure.

Turkey: 1,000 detained over suspected links to Gulen

Suzan Fraser, Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 2:26pm

Turkey on Wednesday detained more than 1,000 people with suspected links to U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen and later temporarily suspended some 9,000 personnel from its police force in one of the largest operations in recent months against the movement that is blamed for last summer's failed military coup.

Hard-line Iranian candidate says US should fear Iran

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 1:54pm

A hard-line candidate in Iran's upcoming presidential election says the United States should be made to fear Iran so that it will back off on sanctions and threats.

The Latest: Turkey suspends around 9,000 from police force

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 1:50pm

The Latest on mass detentions in Turkey related to last year's failed coup (all times local):

US Navy fires warning flare at Iran vessel in Persian Gulf

Jon Gambrell, Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 1:15pm

A U.S. Navy guided-missile destroyer fired a warning flare toward an Iranian Revolutionary Guard vessel coming near it in the Persian Gulf, an American official said Wednesday, the latest tense naval encounter between the two countries.

Albania opposition threatens 'civil disobedience' in vote

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 1:08pm

Albania's opposition is threatening to block voting on May 7, demanding that a caretaker government bring the country to the June polls.

France: Analysis shows Syrian government behind sarin attack

Thomas Adamson and Nataliya Vasilyeva, Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 12:47pm

France said Wednesday that the chemical analysis of samples taken from a deadly sarin gas attack in Syria earlier this month "bears the signature" of President Bashar Assad's government and shows it was responsible.

Tensions rise after Turkish attack on Syrian Kurds

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 12:46pm

Russia on Wednesday criticized Turkey's airstrikes against Kurdish forces in Syria and Iraq, saying they hindered efforts to combat the Islamic State group, as Turkish troops and Syrian Kurdish fighters traded fire across the increasingly tense frontier.

Russia bans Khodorkovsky's 'Open Russia' group

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 12:36pm

Russian authorities have banned the British-based organization Open Russia, which is a strong critic of the Kremlin, but the group's Russia branch claims it is administratively separate and can continue to operate.

Hamas in Gaza says it won't be cowed by Abbas' threats

Mohammed Daraghmeh, Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 12:20pm

Gaza's ruling Hamas will not be cowed by threatened funding cuts, a senior leader said Wednesday, signaling escalating tensions between the militants and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

Death of giant British rabbit adds to United Airlines' woes

Danica Kirka, Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 12:07pm

United Airlines is reviewing its handling of a giant showcase rabbit that died after being shipped across the Atlantic from Britain on one of its flights, the latest in a growing list of customer complaints.

Hungary premier dismisses university fear as EU takes action

Lorne Cook and Pablo Gorondi, Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 12:07pm

Hungary's prime minister on Wednesday dismissed concerns about his country's new higher education law after the European Union launched legal action amid fears the legislation is aimed at shutting down a university founded by billionaire philanthropist George Soros.

The Latest: Iowa man "mourning" after death of giant rabbit

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Apr 26th - 11:37am

The Latest on a giant rabbit that died following a trans-Atlantic flight (all times local):