Here is the latest news from The Associated Press at 11:40 p.m. EST



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BEIJING (AP) — China's death toll from the new virus outbreak has risen by 89 to 811, surpassing the number of fatalities in the 2002-03 SARS epidemic, as other governments stepped up efforts to block the disease. Some 2,656 new cases were reported, fewer than on the previous day, something experts see as a sign the virus's spread may be slowing. SARS had killed 774 people and sickened 8,098, mainly in mainland China and Hong Kong. Elsewhere, France closed two schools after five British visitors contracted the virus at a ski resort. South Korea reported one new case while the Philippines flew home 30 of its citizens from the city at the center of the outbreak.

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Oregon National Guard troops aboard two helicopters airlifted 21 people to safety on Saturday, and authorities reported a 62-year-old woman who lived in one of the areas hit by floods was missing. On Saturday, National Guard troops, working with the Umatilla County Sheriff's Office, used two helicopters to evacuate 21 people who were stranded by the floods. The center says more evacuations are planned for Sunday, The Umatilla County Sheriff's Office also says that it is searching for a woman who went missing near Bar M Ranch, which has had flooding in recent days. Janet Tobkin Conley, 62, was last seen about 7 p.m. Thursday in the Bar M Ranch area.

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Torrential rain lashing Australia’s east coast has extinguished a major wildfire and caused widespread flash flooding. The New South Wales state Rural Fire Service says rain extinguished the Currowan Fire south of Sydney late Saturday after it destroyed 312 homes and razed 1.2 million acres over 74 days. Rural Fire Service Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons says he hopes the heavy rain will move inland from the coast and drench more major fires that have burned for months. Fitzsimmons bid farewell at a Sydney Airport hotel on Sunday to 21 American and 21 Canadian firefighters who were heading home after their deployment battling Australian blazes.

NAKHON RATCHASIMA, Thailand (AP) — A gunman described as a soldier angry over a financial dispute killed two people and then went on a far bloodier rampage Saturday in northeastern Thailand, shooting as he drove to a busy mall where shoppers fled in terror. At least 21 people were killed in all, 31 were injured and others were believed to be still inside the building as more gunshots rang out early Sunday morning. Police commandos are searching the mall for the shooter, and police say they have now secured the building from the ground floor up. It was the country’s second mass shooting in about a month.

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — The U.S. military says two American soldiers were killed and six wounded in a so-called insider attack in eastern Afghanistan. U.S. officials say an Afghan dressed in an Afghan army uniform opened fire late Saturday in eastern Afghanistan's Nangarhar province. A member of the Nangarhar Provincial Council, Ajmal Omer, tells The Associated Press the gunman was killed. There have been numerous attacks by Afghan national army soldiers on their allied partners over the 18 years of Afghanistan's protracted war.

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The Associated Press

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