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AP Top International News at 5:31 p.m. EDT

Puerto Rico still stumbles in the dark a month after 'Maria'
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) -- One man climbs 24 flights of stairs several times a day alongside dormant elevators. Street vendors hawk plastic washboards for $20. And families outstretch their hands as crews in helicopters drop supplies in communities that remain isolated....

More conflicts loom after Islamic State defeat in Raqqa
BEIRUT (AP) -- The Middle East may have turned a page with the defeat of the Islamic State group in its self-declared capital of Raqqa, but the future is looking even more tangled, and potentially as violent....

Spain set to strip Catalonia of powers over independence bid
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) -- The crisis over Catalonia's quest for independence escalated Thursday, as Spain's central government prepared the unprecedented step of stripping the wealthy region of some of its self-governing powers after its leader refused to abandon secession....

Russia's Putin: Trump's foes have blocked his agenda
MOSCOW (AP) -- President Vladimir Putin said Thursday that Russia remains open to cooperation with Washington even though President Donald Trump's political foes in the U.S. have tried to prevent him from fulfilling his campaign promises....

CIA head: NKorea months from perfecting nuclear capabilities
WASHINGTON (AP) -- CIA Director Mike Pompeo said Thursday that North Korea is months away from perfecting its nuclear weapons capabilities....

China's conflicted goals: Freer markets, more party control
BEIJING (AP) -- China's ruling Communist Party is expanding its role in business even as it promises freer markets and support for entrepreneurs on the eve of President Xi Jinping's second five-year term as leader....

Venezuela opposition shows evidence of tampered vote count
CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) -- Venezuela's opposition is presenting what it says is the first hard evidence of possible ballot tampering in Sunday's contested gubernatorial elections....

US tourist fears he was hit in Cuba, years before diplomats
CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) -- Chris Allen's phone started buzzing as word broke that invisible attacks in Cuba had hit a U.S. government worker at Havana's Hotel Capri. Allen's friends and family had heard an eerily similar story from him before....

EU leaders to May: Match Brexit promises with real proposals
BRUSSELS (AP) -- European Union leaders told British Prime Minister Theresa May on Thursday to match her goodwill pledges to boost Brexit negotiations with concrete proposals if she really wants to start discussing a future trade deal by December....

Sons of slain journalist call for Malta leader's resignation
MILAN (AP) -- Maltese authorities faced mounting pressure Thursday to ensure an independent investigation into the slaying of investigative journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, who was known for her fearless reporting on corruption in the small Mediterranean island nation....

AP Photo
AP Photo/Linda Rodriguez Flecha
World Video
Up to the Minute
Video released of Mali troops held by al-Qaida-linked group

Taliban attacks kill 58, nearly wipe out Afghan army camp

Defying Trump, EU leaders commit to Iran nuclear accord

Latin America/Caribbean
Puerto Rico still stumbles in the dark a month after 'Maria'

Middle East
Israeli soldier who shot fatally Palestinian seeks pardon