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Death toll stands at 36 in Oakland warehouse fire
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) - Some people managed to text loved ones goodbye and "I love you" before they died in an Oakland warehouse fire that claimed three dozen lives, officials said, as heart-rending reports of victims' last moments emerged from the most lethal building fire in the U.S. in more than a decade. Officials said early Tuesday that there was no charge in the number of bodies recovered overnight, with the death toll remaining at 36. Alameda County Sheriff's Deputy Tya Modeste said of the 36 bodies recovered 26 of their families have been notified. Modeste said another nine bodies have been "tentatively identified." Officials are still lacking any type of identification for one individual.


Trump says cancel new Air Force One: Costs 'out of control'
NEW YORK (AP) - The government should cancel its multibillion-dollar order for new Air Force One presidential planes, Donald Trump declared Tuesday, serving notice he's ready to jump in and start making decisions six weeks before his inauguration. Costs for the two Boeing 747s are "totally out of control," Trump told reporters in the lobby of his New York skyscraper. The government has contracted with Boeing to build two or more new planes, which would go into service around 2024. That means Trump wouldn't fly on the new planes, which carry U.S. presidents around the globe, unless he pursued and won a second term.


Spokesman offers few clues on Trump's pipeline stance
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - A spokesman for President-elect Donald Trump isn't offering many clues about how the incoming administration will act regarding the disputed Dakota Access oil pipeline. Spokesman Jason Miller told The Associated Press on Monday that Trump supports construction of the pipeline. But Miller wouldn't say whether Trump would reverse the Army's decision on Sunday to decline to issue a permit for the $3.8 billion pipeline to cross under a Missouri River reservoir in southern North Dakota near the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation. Miller said the Trump administration will review the situation "and make the appropriate determination." Protesters, who describe themselves as "water protectors," say they have no plans to leave despite the Army's decision and recent wintry storms.


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Ransomed: The freeing of 226 Christians from Islamic State
SAARLOUIS, Germany (AP) - The millions in ransom money came in dollar by dollar, euro by euro from around the world. The donations, raised from church offerings, a Christmas concert, and the diaspora of Assyrian Christians on Facebook, landed in a bank account in Iraq. Its ultimate destination: the Islamic State group. Deep inside Syria, a bishop worked around the blurred edges of international law to save the lives of more than 200 people - one of the largest groups of hostages yet documented in IS's war in Syria and Iraq. It took more than a year, and videotaped killings of three captives, before all the rest were freed.


Fake news rings alarm bells from restaurant to White House
WASHINGTON (AP) - The bizarre rumors began with a leaked email referring to Hillary Clinton and sinister interpretations of pizza parties. It morphed into fake online news stories about a child sex trafficking ring run by prominent Democrats operating out of a Washington, D.C., restaurant. On Sunday, it culminated in violence when police say a North Carolina man fired an assault rifle inside the Comet Ping Pong restaurant as he attempted to "self-investigate" the conspiracy theory known in the Twitterverse as "Pizzagate." No one was hurt and the man was arrested. But the shooting alarmed those from neighboring businesses all the way to the White House about the real life dangers of fake news on the internet.


Iraqi troops enter another IS-held neighborhood in Mosul
MOSUL, Iraq (AP) - The Iraqi army on Tuesday pushed into another neighborhood held by the Islamic State group on the southeastern edge of Mosul, according to a military statement and Iraqi commanders on the ground. The commander of a joint operations center that oversees the Mosul campaign, Lt. Gen. Abdul-Amir Yarellah, said that soldiers from the 9th Division took over the hospital building in the al-Salam neighborhood. "The hospital was a Daesh base," said Iraqi army Lt. Ahmed Abu Fadl, using the Arabic acronym for IS. "They were treating their wounded there," he added, explaining that he hoped retaking the building would hurt the militants' ability to launch organized counterattacks.


After mistrial, slain SC motorist's family still confident
CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) - Relatives of Walter Scott, the black motorist fatally shot while fleeing a traffic stop, say they are confident justice will prevail even though a South Carolina jury could not reach a verdict in the murder trial of a white former police officer charged in his death. Circuit Judge Clifton Newman on Monday declared a mistrial in the case of Michael Slager after the jury of 11 whites and one black deadlocked. The panel, considering verdicts of murder or voluntary manslaughter, deliberated more than 22 hours over four days and heard testimony from 55 witnesses during the five-week trial.


Syrian government forces advance on 2 fronts in Aleppo
BEIRUT (AP) - Syrian government forces and allied militias captured Aleppo's centrally located al-Shaar neighborhood from rebels on Tuesday as the government and its ally Russia rejected a cease-fire for the war-torn city. Rebels withdrew from al-Shaar under heavy bombardment by pro-government forces to the Marjeh and Maadi neighborhoods, said local media activist Mahmoud Raslan to The Associated Press. Several gunmen were killed. "Morale has hit rock bottom," he said from inside the city's remaining rebel-held enclave. The SANA state news agency said the government captured the entire neighborhood as well as the neighborhoods of al-Qatarji and Karm al-Dada. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group also reported the gains.


Man who shot ex-NFL player charged with manslaughter
HARVEY, La. (AP) - The man who fatally shot ex-NFL player Joe McKnight during a road rage dispute has been arrested and jailed on a manslaughter charge, records show. Ronald Gasser, 54, was arrested late Monday. He was initially taken into custody after the shooting last Thursday but he was released without being charged pending further investigation. It's not clear whether Gasser has an attorney. Attempts to reach his mother, grandmother and stepsister were unsuccessful. Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand announced a news conference for 10 a.m. Tuesday to discuss the case. Normand has said the dispute between the men started on a bridge and proceeded into a New Orleans suburb.


Grammy noms: 9 for Beyonce, 8 each for Drake, Rihanna, Kanye
NEW YORK (AP) - The Grammy Awards are sipping all of Beyonce's lemonade. The pop star leads the 2017 Grammys with nine nominations, including bids for album of the year with "Lemonade," and song and record of the year with "Formation." The singer, who already has 20 Grammys and is the most nominated woman in Grammy history with 62 nods over the course of her career, is also the first artist to earn nominations in the pop, rock, R&B and rap categories in the same year. Behind Beyonce are Drake, Rihanna and Kanye West, who scored eight nominations each. Like Beyonce, Adele is also nominated for album, record and song of the year.