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AP Top News at 8:30 p.m. EDT

Israel hits symbols of Hamas rule; 128 killed
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) - Israel unleashed its heaviest air and artillery assault of the Gaza war on Tuesday, destroying key symbols of Hamas control, shutting down the territory's only power plant and leaving at least 128 Palestinians dead on the bloodiest day of the 22-day conflict. Despite devastating blows that left the packed territory's 1.7 million people cut off from power and water and sent the overall death toll soaring past 1,200, Hamas' shadowy military leader remained defiant as he insisted that the Islamic militants would not cease fire until its demands are met.


US, Europe impose tough new sanctions on Russia
WASHINGTON (AP) - Spurred to action by the downing of the Malaysian airliner, the European Union approved dramatically tougher economic sanctions Tuesday against Russia, including an arms embargo and restrictions on state-owned banks. President Barack Obama swiftly followed with an expansion of U.S. penalties targeting key sectors of the Russian economy. The coordinated sanctions were aimed at increasing pressure on Russian President Vladimir Putin to end his country's support for separatists in eastern Ukraine whom the West blames for taking down the passenger jet nearly two weeks ago. Obama and U.S. allies also warned that Russia was building up troops and weaponry along its border with Ukraine.


Poll: Immigration concerns rise with tide of kids
McALLEN, Texas (AP) - For nearly two months, images of immigrant children who have crossed the border without a parent, only to wind up in concrete holding cells once in the United States, have tugged at heartstrings. Yet most Americans now say U.S. law should be changed so they can be sent home quickly, without a deportation hearing. A new Associated Press-GfK poll finds two-thirds of Americans now say illegal immigration is a serious problem for the country, up 14 points since May and on par with concern about the issue in May 2010, when Arizona's passage of a strict anti-immigration measure brought the issue to national prominence.


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US appeals court blocks Mississippi abortion law
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - Mississippi's effort to close its last abortion clinic was overturned in federal appellate court on Tuesday. Advocates for the law said women with unwanted pregnancies could always travel to other states, but the judges said every state must guarantee constitutional rights, including abortion. The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals voted 2-1 to block Mississippi's 2012 law requiring abortion doctors to obtain admitting privileges at nearby hospitals.


Last crew member of Enola Gay dies in Georgia
ATLANTA (AP) - The last surviving member of the crew that dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, hastening the end of World War II and forcing the world into the atomic age, has died in Georgia. Theodore VanKirk, also known as "Dutch," died Monday of natural causes at the retirement home where he lived in Stone Mountain, Georgia, his son Tom VanKirk said. He was 93.


Generation of tanners see spike in deadly melanoma
WASHINGTON (AP) - Stop sunbathing and using indoor tanning beds, the acting U.S. surgeon general warned in a report released Tuesday that cites an alarming 200 percent jump in deadly melanoma cases since 1973. The report blames a generation of sun worshipping for the $8 billion spent to treat all forms of skin cancer each year.


Twitter 2Q results soar, stock flies high
NEW YORK (AP) - The little blue bird is flying high. Stronger-than-expected financial results pushed Twitter's stock sharply higher on Tuesday after the short messaging service said its revenue more than doubled in the second quarter. Twitter also grew its user base more than expected, alleviating concerns, at least for now, that it doesn't hold appeal for a broad swath of people. Its larger rival, Facebook, also posted strong results last week and its stock is trading near a record high.


AP PHOTOS: Building boom in N. Dakota's oil patch
WILLISTON, N.D. (AP) - President Theodore Roosevelt once came to North Dakota's Badlands to find solitude and solace amid the area's "desolate, grim beauty." But Roosevelt's Dakota is barely visible today. The area's oil boom has resulted in an infrastructure-building frenzy as the rush for jobs and oil demands more roads, homes, food trucks and stores.


Elegant Louvre Garden in Paris infested with rats
PARIS (AP) - Rats are on the rampage in the elegant garden of the Louvre Museum, so bold they romp on the grass in broad daylight, defying death threats from sanitation workers and scaring tourists. The hot weather in Paris has brought many picnicking visitors to the garden, whose garbage is a feast for the rats. And they're getting help from animal lovers who dig up poison and feed them water.


ESPN suspends Smith for comments on abuse
NEW YORK (AP) - ESPN has suspended outspoken sportscaster Stephen A. Smith for a week because of his comments about domestic abuse suggesting women should make sure that they don't do anything to provoke an attack. Smith's commentary occurred during a discussion on ESPN2's "First Take" last Friday about the NFL's two-game suspension of Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice following charges he assaulted his now-wife. The remarks attracted widespread attention, including a stinging rebuke online from a fellow ESPN personality.