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AP Top News at 4:02 p.m. EST

Israeli Cabinet touches off furor by approving bill that defines country as Jewish state
JERUSALEM (AP) - In a move likely to further inflame tensions with Israel's Arab citizens, the Israeli Cabinet on Sunday approved a bill to legally define the country as the nation-state of the Jewish people. The decision, which set off a stormy debate that could bring down Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's brittle coalition government, followed weeks of deadly Arab-Jewish violence and was denounced by critics as damaging to the country's democratic character and poorly timed at such a combustible moment.


With no word from the grand jury, anxieties mount over Ferguson police shooting case
FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) - Despite preparations for a weekend decision in the Ferguson shooting case, the grand jurors apparently needed more time to deliberate, and the uncertainty just seemed to feed the anxiety and speculation Sunday in a city already on edge. More than 3 1/2 months have passed since police Officer Darren Wilson, who is white, killed unarmed black 18-year-old Michael Brown after some sort of confrontation in the middle of a street in the St. Louis suburb. The shooting triggered riots and looting, and police responded with armored vehicles and tear gas.


Former DC mayor Marion Barry, who staged comeback after 1990 crack cocaine arrest, dead at 78
WASHINGTON (AP) - A controversial and tireless advocate for the nation's capital who created jobs for generations of black families, Marion Barry was the ultimate District of Columbia politician, though his arrest for drug use in the midst of a crack cocaine epidemic often overshadows his accomplishments. The former four-term mayor will long be remembered for one night in 1990 when he was caught on video lighting a crack pipe in an FBI sting operation. In an instant, the then-mayor of the capital city was exposed as a drug user himself.


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Colorado Republicans show how party can combat Obama immigration gambit: Say 'no' nicely
DENVER (AP) - Republicans in search of a way to oppose President Barack Obama's moves on immigration without alienating the nation's fast-growing population of Hispanic voters can find a playbook in Colorado. GOP Rep. Cory Gardner won election to the Senate in the midterms in a state where 14 percent of voters are Hispanic. His GOP colleague, Rep. Mike Coffman, won re-election in a district where 14 percent of residents were born in foreign countries.


The gift of giving: Church members each get $500 to do good around world or close to home
CHICAGO (AP) - On a very memorable Sunday, Pastor Laura Truax surprised her congregation with a bold announcement: She was about to hand out money to everyone. LaSalle Street Church had received a tidy $1.6 million from a real estate deal, the pastor said, and $160,000 - a typical 10 percent tithe - would be divided among some 320 regular attendees. Each would get a $500 check to do something positive.


Islamic State group militants recruit, exploit children in Syria and Iraq as spies, fighters
BEIRUT (AP) - Teenagers carrying weapons stand at checkpoints and busy intersections in Iraq's second-largest city, Mosul. Patched onto the left arms of their black uniforms are the logos of the Islamic Police. In Raqqa, the Islamic State group's de facto capital in Syria, boys attend training camp and religious courses before heading off to fight. Others serve as cooks or guards at the extremists' headquarters or as spies, informing on people in their neighborhoods.


US tells Iran it's time to consider extending nuclear talks beyond deadline
VIENNA (AP) - The U.S. told Iran Sunday that it's time to consider extending nuclear talks, in the first formal recognition by Washington that frenzied last-minute diplomacy may not be enough to seal a deal by a rapidly approaching deadline. A senior U.S. official said that with the Monday evening cutoff date a little more than a day away, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry proposed to Iranian Foreign Minister Mohamad Java Zarf that the two sides start discussing post-deadline talks in their latest meeting since Kerry arrived three days ago to add his diplomatic weight to the talks.


New Jersey is latest to consider having colleges define when 'yes means yes'
TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - You think the attractive woman at the party who has been chatting you up all night is ready to take things to the next level. She seems to be throwing all the right signals. But if things turn sexual, are you sure that will hold up under legal scrutiny?


Evacuation plans, shelters readied as snowmelt threatens flooding in Buffalo region
BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) - First came the big storm, then the big dig. Now comes the big melt. Residents of flood-prone areas around Buffalo should move valuables up from the basement, pack a bag and prepare to for the possibility of evacuation as up to 7 feet of melting snow posed the threat of flooding, Gov. Andrew Cuomo warned Sunday.


AP Exclusive: Letter that inspired Kerouac's 'On The Road,' sparked Beat Generation to be sold
LOS ANGELES (AP) - It's been called the letter that launched a literary genre - 16,000 amphetamine-fueled, stream-of-consciousness words written by Neal Cassady to his friend Jack Kerouac in 1950. Upon reading them, Kerouac scrapped an early draft of "On The Road" and, during a three-week writing binge, revised his novel into a style similar to Cassady's, one that would become known as Beat literature.

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