AP News Summary at 11:26 a.m. EDT | National

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Queen Elizabeth II mourned by Britain and world at funeral

LONDON (AP) — Britain and the world are saying a final goodbye to Queen Elizabeth II at a state funeral that drew presidents and kings, princes and prime ministers. Crowds massed along the streets of London on Monday to honor a monarch whose 70-year reign defined an age. In a country known for pomp and pageantry, the first state funeral since Winston Churchill’s was filled with spectacle. Ahead of the service, a bell tolled 96 times. That’s once a minute for each year of Elizabeth’s life. Royal Navy sailors used ropes to draw the gun carriage carrying her flag-draped coffin to Westminster Abbey before pallbearers bore it inside the church. Atop the coffin sat a handwritten note from King Charles III. A committal service was later held in St. George’s Chapel.

Family of American says he was freed by Taliban in swap

WASHINGTON (AP) — Family members and U.S. officials say an American contractor held hostage in Afghanistan for more than two years by the Taliban has been released. They said Monday his release came in an exchange for a convicted Taliban drug lord jailed in the United States. Mark Frerichs, a Navy veteran who spent more than a decade in Afghanistan as a civilian contractor, was abducted in January 2020 and was believed to have been held since then by the Taliban-linked Haqqani network. Negotiations for his release had centered on a deal that would also involve the release of Bashir Noorzai, a notorious drug lord and member of the Taliban.

Ukraine warns of ‘nuclear terrorism’ after strike near plant

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — A Russian missile struck close to reactors at a nuclear power plant in southern Ukraine, not damaging them but hitting other equipment in the same industrial complex. Ukrainian authorities denounced Monday’s attack as an act of “nuclear terrorism.” Video footage showed large fireballs erupting one after the other in the dark. Ukraine’s nuclear operator said the missile struck within 300 meters (328 yards) of reactors at the Pivdennoukrainsk plant, also known as the South Ukraine Nuclear Power Plant. The strike followed warnings from Russian President Vladimir Putin of possible stepped-up attacks on Ukrainian infrastructure after his forces suffered humiliating battlefield setbacks. It also renewed fears of a possible radioactive disaster in the near seven-month war.

Fiona slams Dominican Republic after pounding Puerto Rico

HAVANA (AP) — Hurricane Fiona is roaring over the Dominican Republic after knocking out power across all of Puerto Rico and causing damage the governor says is “catastrophic.” No deaths have been reported, but authorities in the U.S. territory say it’s too early to know the full scope of damage. The expansive storm is still forecast to unleash torrential rain across Puerto Rico on Monday, as well as in the eastern Dominican Republic. A U.S. National Weather Service meteorologist says flooding reached “historic levels,” and authorities have evacuated or rescued hundreds of people across the island. Authorities say some power has returned, but full restoration could take days.

Locked Up: The prison labor that built business empires

In a joint investigation, reporters from the Associated Press and Reveal at the Center for Investigative Reporting spent months unearthing the history of convict leasing that built business empires. They focused on Tennessee Coal, Iron & Railroad, which ran a stockade and coal mine, and the company that later bought it, U.S. Steel. The team found someone living today whose ancestor was imprisoned in the Lone Rock stockade nearly 140 years ago. They also interviewed the descendant of a man who got rich from his role in pioneering Tennessee’s convict leasing system.  The reporters also heard from U.S. Steel. For the first time, it said it was willing to discuss its past with members of the affected community.

How much ‘pain’? Fed to signal more rate hikes ahead

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell bluntly warned in a speech last month that the Fed’s drive to curb inflation by aggressively raising interest rates would “bring some pain.” On Wednesday, Americans may get a better sense of how much pain could be in store. The Fed is expected at its latest meeting to raise its key short-term rate by a substantial three-quarters of a point for the third consecutive time. Another hike that large would lift its benchmark rate — which affects many consumer and business loans — to a range of 3% to 3.25%, the highest level in 14 years.

Q&A: Amanda Gorman talks UN poem, future presidency, novel

LOS ANGELES (AP) — When poet Amanda Gorman was invited to read a newly developed poem at the U.N. General Assembly, the young sensation took a deep look at how societal issues like hunger and poverty have impacted Earth’s preservation. Gorman wanted to express the impact of unity through her poetic words on the opening day of the 77th session Monday in New York. The 23-year-old created the poem titled “An Ode We Owe” in hopes of bringing all nations together to tackle various issues of disparity along with preserving the planet. In an interview with The Associated Press, she says the world’s problems may seem monumental, but they’re “too large to be stepped away from.”

By dancing, Rodrygo and Vinícius make stance against racism

MADRID (AP) — Real Madrid’s young Brazilian forwards made a statement against racism in soccer by dancing after a goal. Rodrygo and Vinícius Júnior made it clear they are not backing down and showed with their samba-like moves after a goal in the derby against Atlético Madrid that they won’t be stopped by the racist language from their critics or by the racist chants from the opposing fans. Rodrygo had just scored Madrid’s first goal in a Madrid derby whose buildup had been surrounded by controversy about Vinícius’ recent goal celebrations.

62 and 700: Judge, Pujols closing in on home run milestones

Aaron Judge and Albert Pujols could make this a milestone week for home runs. Judge hit two more Sunday to raise his season total to 59. That’s two shy of Roger Maris’ American League record. Now the slugger returns to Yankee Stadium, where New York will play its next six games. Pujols is somewhat improbably closing in on the 700-homer mark after hitting 12 since the start of August. The 42-year-old Pujols is retiring at the end of the season.

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