Canada’s Trudeau wins 2nd term but nation more divided

By ROB GILLIES Associated Press
TORONTO (AP) — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau won a second term in a stronger-than-expected showing in Canada’s national elections, claiming a “clear mandate” Tuesday despite a Parliament and nation increasingly fractured along regional lines.
Trudeau’s Liberal Party took the most seats in Parliament but lost its majority in Monday’s balloting. That means it will have to rely on an opposition party to pass legislation.
The prime minister’s early morning address to supporters came as his Conservative rival, Andrew Scheer, had just begun speaking to his own backers, forcing TV networks to break away from Scheer.
But the prime minister struck a conciliatory note: “To those who did not vote for us, know that we will work every single day for you, we will govern for everyone.”
With results still trickling in, the Liberals had 157 seats — 13 short of the 170 needed for a majority in the 338-seat House of Commons — while the Conservatives had 121.
While Trudeau claimed a mandate, his party won fewer raw votes nationally than the Conservatives did, and failed to win a single seat in the western provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan, where the Conservatives dominated.
There is a growing outrage in Alberta, home to the third-largest oil reserves in the world, over Trudeau’s inability to get a pipeline built to the Pacific Coast so that Alberta’s oil can command a higher price.
“To Canadians in Alberta and Saskatchewan,” he said after his victory, “know that you are an essential part of our great country. I have heard your frustration, and I want to be there to support you. Let us all work hard to bring our country together.”
At the same time, Trudeau said Canadians elected a progressive government that will fight climate change. That means he will keep a national carbon tax in place that has also angered western Canada.
In what was supposed to be a concession speech, Scheer said the results showed Trudeau was much weakened since his 2015 election, when pundits had predicted the beginning of another Trudeau dynasty. Trudeau’s father, Pierre, was prime minister from 1968 to 1984, apart from a brief interruption in 1979-80.
“Conservatives have put Justin Trudeau on notice,” Scheer said. “And Mr. Trudeau, when your government falls, Conservatives will be ready, and we will win.”
Canada was also further divided by the electoral success of the separatist Bloc Quebecois in the French-speaking province of Quebec. The Bloc won 32 of the province’s 78 districts, up from 10.
The party, however, didn’t talk about separatism during the campaign and is not expected to seek a referendum for independence from Canada.
Trudeau, 47, prevailed after a series of scandals that diminished his rock-star appeal from 2015 and tarnished his image as a liberal icon.
Old photos of him in blackface and brownface surfaced last month, and Trudeau was also accused of bullying his female attorney general into dropping the prosecution of a Canadian engineering company.
Also, environmentalists have accused him of betrayal for spending billions to buy the pipeline in a so-far unsuccessful bid to get the stalled project moving again. It has been held up by environmental opposition and court challenges.
“I’m surprised at how well Trudeau has done,” said Nelson Wiseman, a political science professor at the University of Toronto. “I don’t think anybody expected Trudeau to get a majority, but they (the Liberals) are not that far off.”
Trudeau’s Liberals are likely to rely on the New Democrats to form a new government and pass legislation. That will further alienate Western Canada because New Democrat leader Jagmeet Singh is against the pipeline project.

Russia, Turkey hold talks on future of border region

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — As the leaders of Russia and Turkey sought to work out the fate of the Syrian border region, the United States ran into a new hitch in getting its troops out of Syria, with neighboring Iraq’s military saying Tuesday that the American forces did not have permission to stay on its territory.
The Iraqi announcement seemed to contradict U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper, who a day earlier said the forces leaving Syria would deploy in Iraq to fight the Islamic State group.
The conflicting signals underscored how the United States has stumbled from one problem to another in getting its troops out of Syria after President Donald Trump abruptly ordered their withdrawal. Amid fears the Americans’ departure will revive IS, Esper is considering keeping some troops in Syria to protect oil fields held by Kurdish-led fighters, backing away from the full withdrawal first touted by Trump.
After the Iraqi statement, Esper said he would speak to the Iraqi defense minister on Wednesday and underlined that the U.S. has no plans to keep the troops in Iraq “interminably” and intends to “eventually get them home.”
The U.S. pullout opened the door for Turkey to launch its offensive against Kurdish fighters on Oct. 9. After a storm of criticism, Washington moved to broker a five-day cease-fire that was set to expire Tuesday night.
Meanwhile, Russia has stepped into the void to strengthen its role as a power broker in Syria. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Russia’s Vladimir Putin held talks in the Black Sea town of Sochi just hours before the cease-fire was set to expire.
The talks are likely to be crucial in determining arrangements along the Syrian-Turkish border, where Ankara demands a long “safe zone” cleared of Kurdish fighters.
Seeking protection after being abandoned by the Americans, the Kurds turned to the Syrian government and its main ally, Russia. The Syrian army has advanced into parts of the area, and Russia deployed its troops in some areas to act as a buffer force.
Russia has powerful sway on all sides. Turkey has suggested it wants Russia to persuade the Syrian government to cede it control over a major chunk of territory in the northeast. The Kurds are hoping Russia can keep Turkey out and help preserve some of the autonomy they carved out for themselves during Syria’s civil war.
Syrian President Bashar Assad has vowed to reunite all the territory under Damascus’ rule. On Tuesday, Assad called Erdogan “a thief” and said he was ready to support any “popular resistance” against Turkey’s invasion.
“We are in the middle of a battle and the right thing to do is to rally efforts to lessen the damages from the invasion and to expel the invader sooner or later,” he told troops during a visit to the northwestern province of Idlib.
The immediate question was the fate of the U.S.-brokered cease-fire, which was to run out at 10 p.m. (1900 GMT) Tuesday evening.
Erdogan said 1,300 Syrian Kurdish fighters had yet to vacate a stretch of the border as required under the deal. He said 800 fighters had left so far. The Kurdish-led force has said it will carry out the pullout.
If it doesn’t, Erdogan warned Tuesday, “our offensive will continue from where it left off, with a much greater determination.”
“There is no place for the (Kurdish fighters) in Syria’s future. We hope that with Russia’s cooperation, we will rid the region of separatist terror,” he said.
Under the accord, the Kurdish fighters are to vacate a stretch of territory roughly 120 kilometers (75 miles) wide and 30 kilometers (20 miles) deep between the Syrian border towns of Tal Abyad and Ras al-Ayn.
But that leaves the situation in the rest of the northeastern border unclear. Currently, other than the few places where Syrian troops have deployed, they are solely in the hands of the Kurdish-led fighters — a situation Ankara has repeatedly said it cannot tolerate. Turkey considers the fighters terrorists, because of their links to Kurdish insurgents inside Turkey.
Turkey wants to control a “safe zone” extending more than 400 kilometers (250 miles) along the border, from the Euphrates River to the Iraqi border. There, it plans to resettle about 2 million of the roughly 3.6 million Syrian refugees currently living in Turkey.
Russia sent a new signal to Turkey about the need to negotiate directly with Assad. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov emphasized that only Damascus could authorize the Turkish troop presence on the Syrian territory.
Assad’s visit Tuesday with Syrian forces in Idlib province underlined Damascus’ goal of regaining the border. Idlib is adjacent to a border enclave that Turkey captured several years ago in another incursion. Turkey also has observation points inside Idlib, negotiated with Russia, to monitor a cease-fire there between the government and opposition fighters and jihadi groups.
Erdogan is “a thief,” Assad told the troops. “He stole the factories and the wheat and the oil in cooperation with Daesh (the Islamic State group) and now is stealing the land.”
He said his government had offered clemency to Kurdish fighters — whom it considers separatists — to “ensure that everyone is ready to resist the aggression” and fight the Turkish assault.
Syrian state media reported, meanwhile, that government forces entered new areas in Hassakeh province at the far eastern end of the border, under the arrangement with the Kurds.
Turkey’s incursion into Syria has led to an international outcry, which has in turn enraged Erdogan, who has accused his NATO allies of not standing by Turkey.
European Council President Donald Tusk condemned the incursion and called on Turkey — which is a candidate for EU membership — to pull out troops.
“No one is fooled by the so-called cease-fire,” Tusk told EU lawmakers. Any course other than a Turkish withdrawal “means unacceptable suffering, a victory for Daesh (the Islamic State group), and a serious threat to European security.”
German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer proposed the establishment of an internationally controlled security zone in Syria, “with the inclusion of Turkey and Russia.”
Isachenkov reported from Moscow. Associated Press writers Elena Becatoros in Istanbul, Kirsten Grieshaber in Berlin and Sarah El Deeb in Beirut contributed to this report.

British PM says he’ll pull Brexit bill if lawmakers delay

LONDON (AP) — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was headed for a showdown Tuesday with lawmakers who want to put the brakes on his drive to push his European Union divorce bill through the House of Commons in just three days and take Britain out of the bloc by Oct. 31.
Johnson said that if Parliament imposes a longer timetable, he will withdraw the bill and call a vote on holding a snap general election — a threat aimed at breaking the political deadlock over Brexit that has dragged on for more than three years since British voters opted to leave the EU.
“I will in no way allow months more of this,” said Johnson, who took power in July vowing that the U.K. would leave the bloc on the scheduled date of Oct. 31, come what may.
“If Parliament refuses to allow Brexit to happen and instead … decides to delay everything until January or possibly longer, in no circumstances can the government continue with this (bill),” he said.
Last week Johnson struck a divorce deal with the 27 other EU leaders, but on Saturday he failed to win Parliament’s backing for it. His only remaining hope of leaving on time is to get lawmakers to pass the Brexit-implementing bill into law before the scheduled departure date, nine days away.
Johnson’s threat to pull the bill, which would turn the exit deal into law, piles pressure on lawmakers as they consider whether to approve the government’s legislation. The bill faces two votes Tuesday, with lawmakers first being asked to approve it in principle, followed by a vote on the government’s schedule for debate and possible amendments.
Johnson said backing the bill would allow lawmakers to “turn the page and allow this Parliament and this country to begin to heal and unite.”
The Brexit deal sets out the terms of Britain’s departure, including measures to maintain an open border between the U.K.’s Northern Ireland and EU member Ireland. It also enshrines the right of U.K. and EU citizens living in the other’s territory to continue with their lives, and sets out the multibillion pound (dollar) payments Britain must make to meet its financial obligations to the EU.
But the deal does not cover the nitty gritty of future relations between the U.K. and the EU: Instead, it confirms a transition period lasting until at least the end of 2020 — and possibly 2022 — in which relations will remain frozen as they are now while a permanent new relationship is worked out.
If the bill doesn’t pass and Britain leaves the EU without a deal, there will be no transition period, uncertainty for millions of citizens and a host of new tariffs, customs checks and other barriers to trade on Day 1. Most economists say that would send unemployment rising, the value of the pound plummeting and plunge the U.K. into recession.
Johnson’s Conservatives hold just 288 of the 650 House of Commons seats, so he will need support from opposition and independent lawmakers to pass the bill, though many analysts expect it be approved.
The sticking point is expected to be the three-day timetable because of concerns it doesn’t provide enough time for scrutiny of the 115-page document. Major bills usually take weeks or months to pass through Parliament, giving time for line-by-line scrutiny by lawmakers.
Green lawmaker Caroline Lucas tweeted that lawmakers “had more time to debate the Wild Animals in Circuses Act (affecting 19 animals) than they will to decide the future of 65 million people. It’s hard to think of anything which better illustrates this Govt’s contempt for people, Parliament & democracy.”
Ominously for the government, some lawmakers who support the Brexit deal said they would vote against the short timetable.
“Unless you are prepared to contemplate more expansive debate, there is not the slightest possibility of considering the deal that has been obtained within the time available,” Ken Clarke, a senior lawmaker recently ousted from Johnson’s Conservative Party group in Parliament, told the Guardian newspaper.
Johnson’s government had sought a “straight up-and-down vote” Monday on the agreement.
But the speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow, refused to allow it because lawmakers voted to delay approving the Brexit deal on Saturday, and parliamentary rules bar the same measure from being considered a second time during a session of Parliament unless something has changed.
Bercow’s ruling plunged the tortuous Brexit process back into grimly familiar territory: acrimonious uncertainty.
If Parliament agrees to Johnson’s timetable, opposition lawmakers plan to seek amendments that could substantially alter the bill, for example by adding a requirement that the Brexit deal be put to voters in a new referendum, or by requiring the government to extend the transition period until a new trade deal with the EU has been agreed.
The government says such major amendments would wreck its legislation, and it will withdraw the bill if the opposition plan succeeds.
With the Brexit deadline looming and British politicians still squabbling over the country’s departure terms, Johnson has been forced to ask the EU for a three-month delay to Britain’s departure date.
He did that, grudgingly, to comply with a law passed by Parliament ordering the government to postpone Brexit rather than risk the economic damage that could come from a no-deal exit.
European Council President Donald Tusk said Tuesday that EU leaders “will decide in coming days” whether to grant Britain that extension — what would be the third.
Associated Press writer Lorne Cook in Brussels contributed to this report.
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South Sudan’s former child soldiers struggle to move on

By SAM MEDNICK Associated Press
YAMBIO, South Sudan (AP) — When he escaped the armed group that had abducted him at the age of 15, the child soldier swore he’d never go back. But the South Sudanese teen still thinks about returning to the bush, six months after the United Nations secured his release.
“Being asked to kill someone is the hardest thing,” he told The Associated Press, speaking on condition of anonymity for his safety.
And yet the army offered him a kind of stability he has yet to find outside it. “I had everything, bedding and clothes, I’d just steal what I needed … here, I haven’t received what I was expecting,” he said.
He lives with family, adrift, waiting to attend a U.N.-sponsored job skills program, struggling to forget his past.
There are an estimated 19,000 child soldiers in South Sudan, one of the highest rates in the world, according to the U.N. As the country emerges from a five-year civil war that killed almost 400,000 people and displaced millions, some worry the fighting could re-ignite if former child soldiers aren’t properly reintegrated into society.
“Without more support, the consequence is that the children will move towards the barracks where there’s social connection, food and something to do,” said William Deng Deng, chairman for South Sudan’s national disarmament demobilization and reintegration commission. “They loot and raid and it will begin to create insecurity.”
Since the fighting broke out in 2013, the U.N. children’s agency has facilitated the release of more than 3,200 child soldiers from both government and opposition forces.
Yet even after a peace deal was signed a year ago, the rate of forced child soldier recruitment by both sides in the conflict is increasing, the U.N. Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan said in a statement earlier this month.
“Ironically, the prospect of a peace deal has accelerated the forced recruitment of children, with various groups now seeking to boost their numbers before they move into the cantonment sites,” said commission chairwoman Yasmin Sooka. According to the peace deal the government and opposition should have 41,500 troops trained and unified into one national army.
Children who leave armed groups often struggle to adjust.
The AP followed several child soldiers among 121 released in February. Many said they are still haunted by their pasts, unable to talk about their experiences for fear of being stigmatized and often incapable of controlling their anger.
“Whenever I think about the bush, even if I’m playing football, I feel like stopping and picking something up and hitting my friends,” said a 13-year-old. The AP is not using the names of the former child soldiers to protect their identities.
Abducted by armed men when he was 11, he worked as a spy for an opposition group and at times was forced to witness and partake in horrific acts. He watched a soldier kill a child for refusing to do his chores, and he was forced to set a house on fire, burning alive everyone inside.
“I hear those people screaming in my dreams,” he said.
Once released, the former child soldiers are given a three-month reintegration package including food and the opportunity for educational and psychosocial support. However, the system is overburdened and underfunded.
“It’s a lot of work. Sometimes I can only spend 15 to 20 minutes with each child,” said Joseph Ndepi, a social worker with World Vision who is supporting 46 children.
Many families don’t know how to deal with their children’s change in behavior once they’ve returned.
“When he initially got out he was so rough he’d beat the kids, and when our mom tried to intervene he’d turn on her,” one 16-year-old said of her elder brother. Both children were abducted and released from armed groups at the same time.
While the girl wanted to forget the past, her brother tried to relive it.
At night he’d sneak out of the house and perform mock ambushes to see how close he could get to robbing people’s properties without being caught, the 17-year-old said. Since starting therapy he has stopped the late-night excursions and reined in his temper.
Some of the children’s behavior is related to the power they felt in the army, said Kutiote Justin, a social worker with Catholic Medical Mission Board, an international aid group. One former child soldier he works with insists on calling himself “the commander.”
A lack of resources for reintegration could hurt long-term assistance.
About 420 children have participated in vocational courses to learn professions such as welding, carpentry and tailoring, yet it’s unclear if there will be enough funding to continue past December.
Almost $5 million is needed for the next two years but currently only $500,000 is available, according to UNICEF.
“Donors aren’t funding to the same extent they used to and now there’s potentially an even greater need,” said spokesman Yves Willemot. And more child soldiers are expected to be released in the near future, he said.
South Sudan’s government isn’t investing in child soldier reintegration, according to the national disarmament, demobilization and reintegration commission. The hope is that once a unity government is formed in mid-November, a key part of the peace deal, the international community will be more inclined to contribute.
But the peace deal is fraught with delays and questionable political will. The government hasn’t committed the $100 million it pledged for the peace process, and key elements such as training a unified army have yet to be realized.
Meanwhile, families whose children have returned from the fighting are doing what they can to keep them from leaving again.
In August the 17-year-old felt lonely, so he packed his bags and headed for the bush. He got as far as the main road before his family’s words echoed through his head.
“Stay with your people, don’t go to that place,” he said, recalling their advice. “Just stay here in peace.”
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Oslo police shoot to stop man driving on sidewalk, 3 injured

By JAN M. OLSEN Associated Press
COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — An armed Norwegian man stole an ambulance and drove it along a sidewalk in Oslo on Tuesday, injuring two toddlers as police tried to stop him by shooting at the tires and ramming the vehicle.
The 32-year-old man was injured and arrested on suspicion of attempted murder, authorities said.
Inside the stolen ambulance, police found an Uzi submachine gun, a shotgun and what they said were “large amounts” of narcotics.
“It is too early to say whether this is terror-related, but we are investigating broadly and fully,” police said in a statement.
Investigator Grete Lier Mettid said the suspect was known to have had ties to far-right groups.
Police did not identify the man by name.
“It is, however, too early to say anything about the motive,” Lier Mettid told a news conference in the Norwegian capital.
Johan Fredriksen, a senior police officer, said the ambulance ran into a stroller carrying two seven-month old twins, though they were not believed to be seriously injured.
An elderly couple who dived under a parked car to avoid the ambulance escaped injury.
Police shot at the tires to stop the ambulance and did not target the man, Fredriksen said. The vehicle stopped after being rammed by police.
A video posted by several Norwegian media showed how police officers pulled the man out of the ambulance through the side window because the front door had been damaged when it collided with obstacles, including a road sign.
The yellow-and-blue ambulance was stolen after authorities responded to a traffic accident on an Oslo traffic circle in which a car had turned over. The man left the scene on foot and pointed a weapon at police officers before stealing the ambulance.
A 25-year-old woman who was a passenger in the overturned car was later arrested. Both the man and the woman are known to the police, Lier Mettid told reporters.
Anders Bayer, a spokesman for Oslo University Hospital, confirmed to Norwegian news agency NTB that the ambulance was stolen by an armed person. Three employees in the vehicle when it was stolen were unharmed, Bayer added.
The Aftenposten newspaper published a photo showing a man wearing green trousers lying next to the vehicle surrounded by police officers. Another photo in the daily showed a handcuffed man, flanked by police, walking toward an ambulance stretcher.
A witness told the newspaper that the ambulance was driving at high speed followed by a police car in pursuit.
“I heard several shots,” Omar Khatujev told Aftenposten.

Syrian army moves to confront Turkish forces as US withdraws

AKCAKALE, Turkey (AP) — Syrian government troops moved into a series of towns and villages in northern Syria Monday, setting up a potential clash with Turkish-led forces in the area, as U.S. troops prepared to pull out.
The Syrian army’s deployment near the Turkish border came hours after Syrian Kurdish forces previously allied with the U.S. said they had reached a deal with President Bashar Assad’s government to help fend off Turkey’s invasion, now in its sixth day.
The announcement of a deal between Syria’s Kurds and its government is a major shift in alliances that came after President Donald Trump ordered all U.S. troops withdrawn from the northern border area amid the rapidly spreading chaos.
The shift sets up a potential clash between Turkey and Syria and raises the specter of a resurgent Islamic State group as the U.S. relinquishes any remaining influence in northern Syria to Assad and his chief backer, Russia.
The fighting also seems likely to endanger, if not altogether crush, the brief experiment in self-rule set up by Syria’s Kurds since the war began.
“We are going back to our normal positions that are at the border,” said a Syrian officer said, as embattled Kurdish authorities invited the government to retake towns and villages in the north.
Syrian troops arrived on Monday in the northern province of Raqqa aboard buses and pickup trucks with mounted heavy machineguns.
Turkey has pressed on with its invasion of northern Syria, warning its NATO allies in Europe and the United States not to stand in its way.
Turkish troops and Syrian proxy forces have steadily pushed their way south of the border, clashing with the Kurdish fighters over a stretch of 200 kilometers (125 miles). The offensive has displaced at least 130,000 people.
Turkey’s president signaled that it was ready to launch an assault on the city of Manbij, where Kurdish-led groups invited Syrian government forces to re-enter and defend the town.
“We are about to implement our decision on Manbij,” President Recep Tayyip Erdogan told reporters on Monday.
He added that Turkey’s aim would be to return the city to Arab populations whom he said where its rightful owners.
Turkish forces were already positioned at the city’s edge, according to CNN-Turk.
Erdogan has already said Turkey will not negotiate with the Syrian Kurdish fighters, which it considers “terrorists” for links to a long-running Kurdish insurgency within its own borders.
Syrian state media reported late Sunday that government troops were marching toward Manbij — as well as the border town of Kobani that in 2015 witnessed the Islamic State group’s first defeat in a battle by U.S.-backed Kurdish fighters.
In another direction, Syrian troops moved east from Aleppo province to Raqqa where state media said they had reached Ein Issa. Heavy fighting the previous day there reached a Kurdish-run displaced-person camp that is home to some 12,000 people, including around 1,000 wives and widows of IS fighters and their children. Hundreds are believed to escaped amid the chaos.
The Syrian army also moved into the town of Tal Tamr, which is about 20 kilometers (12 miles) from the Turkish border, and Tabqa, known for its dam on the Euphrates River and its nearby air base that carries the same name.
SANA said government forces planned to “confront the Turkish aggression,” without giving further details. Photos posted by SANA showed several vehicles and a small number of troops in Tal Tamr.
Tal Tamr is a predominantly Assyrian Christian town that was once held by IS before it was retaken by Kurdish-led forces. Many Syrian Christians, who make up about 10 percent of Syria’s pre-war population of 23 million, left for Europe over the past 20 years, with the flight gathering speed since the country’s conflict began in March 2011.
Mroue reported from Beirut. Associated Press writers Albert Aji in Damascus, Syria and Suzan Fraser in Ankara, Turkey, contributed to this report.

Japan looks for missing after typhoon kills dozens

By JAE C. HONG and YURI KAGEYAMA Associated Press
NAGANO, Japan (AP) — Rescue crews dug through mudslides and searched near swollen rivers Monday as they looked for those missing from a typhoon that left dozens dead and caused serious damage in central and northern Japan.
Typhoon Hagibis unleashed torrents of rain and strong winds Saturday, leaving thousands of homes on Japan’s main island flooded, damaged or without power.
A riverside section of Nagano, northwest of Tokyo, was covered with mud, its apple orchards completely flooded and homes still without electricity.
Japan’s Kyodo News agency reported that 48 people died from the typhoon, 17 were missing and some 100 were injured.
The government’s Fire and Disaster Management Agency, which is generally more conservative in assessing its numbers, said 24 people were dead and nine were missing.
Experts said it would take time to accurately assess the extent of damage, and the casualty count has been growing daily.
Hagibis dropped record amounts of rain for a period in some spots, according to meteorological officials, causing more than 20 rivers to overflow. In Kanagawa prefecture, southwest of Tokyo, 100 centimeters (39 inches) of rain was recorded over 48 hours.
Some of the muddy waters in streets, fields and residential areas have subsided. But many places remained flooded Monday, with homes and surrounding roads covered in mud and littered with broken wooden pieces and debris. Some places normally dry still looked like giant rivers.
Some who lined up for morning soup at evacuation shelters, which are housing 30,000 people, expressed concern about the homes they left behind. Survivors and rescuers will also face colder weather, with northern Japan turning chilly this week.
Soldiers and firefighters from throughout Japan were deployed to assist with rescue efforts. Helicopters could be seen plucking some of the stranded from higher floors and rooftops of submerged homes.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the government would set up a special disaster team, including officials from various ministries, to deal with the fallout from the typhoon, including helping those in evacuation centers and boosting efforts to restore water and electricity to homes.
“Our response must be rapid and appropriate,” Abe said, stressing that many people remained missing and damage was extensive.
Damage was especially serious in Nagano prefecture, where an embankment of the Chikuma River broke.
In one area, a few vehicles in used car lots were flipped over by the waters that had gushed in, covering everything with mud. Apples swept from the flooded orchards lay scattered in the mud.
Areas in Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures in northern Japan were also badly flooded.
In such places, rescue crew paddled in boats to reach half-submerged homes, calling out to anyone left stranded.
Tokyo Electric Power Co. said 35,100 homes were still without electricity early Monday evening in Tokyo and nearby prefectures that the utility serves. That was down from nearly 57,000 earlier in the day.
East Japan Railway Co. said Hokuriku bullet trains were running Monday but were reduced in frequency and limited to the Nagano city and Tokyo routes.
Mimori Domoto, who works at Nagano craft beer-maker Yoho Brewing Co., said all 40 employees at her company were confirmed safe, though deliveries were halted.
“My heart aches when I think of the damage that happened in Nagano. Who would have thought it would get this bad?” she said.
Tama River in Tokyo overflowed, but the damage was not as great in the capital as in other areas. Areas surrounding Tokyo, such as Tochigi, also suffered damage.
Much of life in Tokyo returned to normal on Monday. People were out and about in the city, trains were running, and store shelves left bare when people were stockpiling were replenished.
Kageyama reported from Tokyo.
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Far-right groups protest Ukrainian president’s peace plan

By YURAS KARMANAU Associated Press
KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — As police watched warily, far-right and nationalist groups protested Monday in the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv, expressing anger at President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and his long-awaited peace plan for eastern Ukraine.
Zelenskiy paid homage Monday to Ukrainians killed in the five-year conflict with Moscow-backed separatists, holding a moment of silence at a Kyiv monument. Later he will visit Ukrainian military forces on the front line in the east, where fighting has killed at least 13,000 people since 2014.
Authorities expect tens of thousands of protesters at nationalist demonstrations planned throughout the day to mark Defense of the Homeland Day. Zelenskiy urged participants to avoid violence and warned of potential “provocations” from those who want to stoke chaos.
About 100 people gathered Monday morning in front of the president’s administration, waving banners protesting Zelenskiy’s tentative agreement to hold local elections in eastern Ukraine and his commitment to pull back heavy weaponry near separatist-held areas.
Critics call the accord a “capitulation” to Russia and fear it will lead to Russia having the upper hand in deciding the future for the conflict-torn region. “Peace after Victory” read one huge banner.
“Zelenskiy wants to strike a deal with the devil. But you can’t believe Russia, the country stole Crimea and violated all its promises,” said 22-year-old student protester Bohdan Samoylenko.
Nurse Oksana Petrova, 37, said: “Thousands of Ukrainians gave their lives in the east, and now we should forgive them and surrender to them? Zelenskiy is a servant of the Kremlin and not the (Ukrainian) people.”
The head of one of the protesting groups, Veterans’ Brotherhood, said Zelenskiy held a closed-door meeting with nationalist groups last week to try to explain his position and calm tensions, but claimed the president said he has “no plan.”
Ukraine, Russia and the separatists signed an accord earlier this month to pull back heavy weaponry and to hold an election in the area at a later date. The pullback has not occurred because of shelling from both sides and threats from Ukrainian hardliners to hamper the disengagement.
Zelenskiy, a comedian who rose to the presidency this year on promises to end the conflict, is sticking to the accord, insisting that it’s the only way for his country to move forward.
He still enjoys the support of most Ukrainians, who argue he needs to be given time to fulfill his promises to revive the economy. Ukrainians have also shrugged off his embarrassing phone call with U.S. President Donald Trump that unleashed an impeachment inquiry in the United States.
“I love my country but I’m not like those nationalists, I don’t have time for protests. And what good does that bring?” asked Nadiya Kuzmenko, 68, a former arms factory worker who cleans houses to supplement her $125 monthly pension.
While the nationalist groups gathered at key sites in Kyiv, at other spots in the city families with strollers just enjoyed the holiday, eating ice cream and basking in an unusually warm autumn day.
Angela Charlton and Lynn Berry in Kyiv contributed.

Conservatives dominate Polish vote, capitalize on spending

By VANESSA GERA Associated Press
WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Poland’s conservative ruling Law and Justice party has capitalized on its popular social spending policies to do even better at the ballot box than when it swept to power four years ago, according to nearly complete results reported Monday.
If confirmed, the results from Sunday’s general election would be the strongest showing for a single Polish party in a parliamentary election in 30 years, since Poland threw off communism to establish democracy.
Law and Justice won over 44% of Sunday’s vote, up from 38% in 2015, according to results reported by the state electoral commission based on 92% of the votes. Under the Polish system for seat distribution, that result translates into the party having a majority of seats in the 460-seat lower house of parliament.
The Civic Coalition, a centrist alliance built around the Civic Platform party, once led by EU leader Donald Tusk, was running second with almost 27% support.
Despite that result, Law and Justice leaders, however, were not overly enthusiastic. It leaves them short of the two-thirds majority that they sought to change the constitution as they work to reshape Poland as a strong modern state rooted in a conservative Roman Catholic outlook that rejects abortion and gay rights.
“We achieved a lot, but we deserve more,” party leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski declared in a victory speech late Sunday.
A left-wing alliance build around the Democratic Left Alliance trailed in third with slightly over 12% support, bringing the left back into parliament after having no representation there over the past four years.
The conservative agrarian Polish People’s Party, in alliance with an anti-establishment party led by a rock star, Kukiz 15, got nearly 9%.
Confederation, a new far-right group that is openly anti-Semitic and homophobic, was set to enter parliament after winning 6.8% of the vote.
With 94% of votes counted to the less powerful 100-seat Senate, Law and Justice had 45% support, the Civic Coalition 35% and the Polish People’s Party nearly 6%, while the others did not get seats.
Turnout was at a record high of over 61% in a sign of how important voters on all sides considered this election.
In the past, Kaczynski has said he wants a new constitution to “guarantee true democracy.” Critics fear that would amount to a power grab, given the party’s track record on the judiciary and the media.
According to the European Union, the ruling party’s overhaul of Poland’s courts and public prosecution over the past four years has eroded the country’s judicial independence.
The ruling party has vowed to complete its overhaul of the judicial system after the election.
The party has also used public media as a tool to promote its own successes and cast a poor light on the opposition.

Economists who study poverty win Nobel Prize

STOCKHOLM (AP) — The 2019 Nobel Prize in economics was awarded Monday to Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo and Michael Kremer for pioneering new ways to alleviate global poverty.
Banerjee and Duflo are at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, while Kremer is at Harvard University. The three have often worked together.
Duflo, who phoned into the news conference where the prize was announced, said receiving it was “incredibly humbling.” The 46-year-old, born in Paris, is the youngest person ever and only the second woman to receive the economics prize. The first was Elinor Ostrom in 2009.
She noted that the profession is not always a welcoming one for women.
“Showing that it is possible for a woman to succeed and be recognized for success I hope is going to inspire many, many other women to continue working and many other men to give them the respect that they deserve like every single human being,” she said.
The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said the three economists pioneered new ways to fight global poverty by focusing on smaller, more manageable issues like education or child health.
They said Kremer showed the power of that approach in the mid-1990s in fieldwork in Kenya.
The academy said that as a direct result of the winners’ studies, five million Indian children benefited from remedial tutoring in schools.
Colleagues applauded the news.
“Fantastic decision!!” Max Roser, a University of Oxford researcher who founded the Our World in Data project, wrote on Twitter. “Even after two centuries of progress against global poverty I think it is clearly one of the very biggest problems in the world today.”
Banerjee’s mother, Nirmala Banerjee, also an economist, told news channel NDTV in India that the prize was unexpected.
“He has been trying to get economics away from the theoretical part, but using theory to understand the world as it is,” she said from her home in Kolkata. “The way it works, the way poverty is, the way people handle poverty.”
Banerjee frequently returns to India to contribute to the work of the Poverty Action Lab, an international research center he and Duflo co-founded in 2003. “This is huge for us,” Shobhini Mukerji, the South Asia branch’s executive director told The Associated Press from New Delhi. “India is where the seeds were sown for their research.”
Banerjee this year advised India’s opposition party, the Congress, ahead of national elections in May about offering financial aid to the poor. He has also criticized the Modi government about alleged political interference in statistical data and over a program to take cash out of the economy.
There was no immediate comment from Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Twitter, where he is an active user.
Officially known as the Bank of Sweden Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel, the award wasn’t created by the prize founder, but is considered to be part of the Nobel stable of awards.
It was created by Riksbanken, the Swedish central bank, in 1968, and the first winner was selected a year later.
With the glory comes a 9 million-kronor ($918,000) cash award, a gold medal and a diploma.
Last week, six Nobel prizes were given — medicine, physics and chemistry plus two literature awards, and the coveted Peace Prize.
All but the winner of the Peace Prize receive their awards on Dec. 10 — the anniversary of Nobel’s death in 1896 — in Stockholm. The winner of the Peace Prize receives the award in Oslo, Norway.
Olsen reported from Copenhagen.
Read more stories on the 2019 Nobel Prizes by The Associated Press at