BC--Americas Digest

TOP STORIES:

UNITED NATIONS-SUMMIT

UNITED NATIONS -- President Barack Obama pledges all possible tools -- military, intelligence and economic -- to defeat the Islamic State group, but acknowledges the extremist group has taken root in Syria and Iraq, is resilient and continues to expand. By Zeina Karam. AP Photos. AP Video.

WITH: UNITED NATIONS-SUMMIT-THE LATEST; UNITED NATIONS-SUMMIT-SAUDI ARABIA; UNITED NATIONS-SUMMIT-MALDIVES; UNITED NATONS-HUNGARY-SUMIT; UNITED NATIONS-SUMMIT-NATO; UNITED NATIONS-JAPAN.

UNITED STATES-CUBA

UNITED NATIONS -- Making good on a pledge to change U.S. posture toward Cuba, President Barack Obama held talks Tuesday with Cuban President Raul Castro, the second time the leaders of the once-estranged nations have met this year. By Darlene Superville. AP Photos.

UNITED STATES-AFGHANISTAN

WASHINGTON -- In a potential major shift in policy, U.S. military leaders want to keep at least a few thousand U.S. troops in Afghanistan beyond 2016. By Robert Burns and Lolita C. Baldor. AP Photos.

OBAMA-SYRIA

NEW YORK -- In a year of diplomatic breakthroughs, President Barack Obama can't escape the shadow of Syria's intractable crisis. Obama arrived for his annual trip to the United Nations this week eager to tout the restoration of U.S. diplomatic ties with Cuba and the completion of a landmark nuclear accord with Iran. He shook hands with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif, the first such encounter by an American president since the 1979 Islamic revolution, and held formal talks with Cuban President Raul Castro. By White House Correspondent Julie Pace. AP Photos. AP Video.

ISLAMIC STATE SANCTIONS

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. government announces sanctions against 25 people and five groups connected to the Islamic State, disclosing intelligence that depicts a sprawling international organization with tentacles across Europe, Asia and the Middle East. By Intelligence Writer Ken Dilanian.

With: TERROR-FOREIGN FIGHTERS.

PRESIDENTIAL RACE-REPUBLICANS-TAXES

WASHINGTON -- Republican presidential candidates promise tax cuts for everyone, without much concern for balancing the budget. By Nicholas Riccardi. SENT: 880 words, photos.

With: PRESIDENTIAL RACE-BILL CLINTON-TRUMP; PRESIDENTIAL RACE-CLINTON; PRESIDENTIAL RACE-TRUMP-PUTIN.

CONGRESS-PLANNED PARENTHOOD

WASHINGTON -- The head of Planned Parenthood defends the U.S women's health organization before a Republican-run Congress bent on slashing its federal funding, telling lawmakers that accusations against her group fed by stealthily recorded videos are "offensive and categorically untrue." By Alan Fram. AP Photos.

PERU-MINE PROTEST

LIMA, Peru -- Peru's government suspends civil liberties and mobilizes the military in a highlands region after four people were killed and 22 injured in a clash between police and farmers over a Chinese-owned copper mining project. By Franklin Briceno.

CONGRESS-BUDGET

WASHINGTON -- A temporary government-wide funding measure that would keep the government open past a midnight deadline should make its way to President Barack Obama on Wednesday with time to spare. By Andrew Taylor. AP Photos.

CONGRESS-REPUBLICANS

WASHINGTON -- Stunned and divided, House Republicans sought a way forward as Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy pledged to bring them together after Speaker John Boehner's sudden resignation. BY Congressional Correspondent Erica Werner. AP Photos.

GEORGIA-EXECUTION

ATLANTA -- In a last ditch effort to keep their client alive, lawyers for the only woman on Georgia's death row have filed a flurry of appeals with high courts of both the United States and the state of Georgia. By Kate Brumback.

OKLAHOMA EXECUTION

McALESTER, Oklahoma -- Oklahoma death row inmate Richard Glossip is set to be executed after a two-week delay during which judges rejected his attorneys' claim that new evidence will prove his innocence. By Sean Murphy. AP Photos.

With: ARKANSAS-EXECUTIONS.

COLOMBIA-REBEL INTERVIEW

BOGOTA, Colombia -- The leader of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia is shying away from a six-month deadline to sign a peace accord to end Latin America's oldest guerrilla conflict. By Jacobo Garcia. AP Photo.

CONGRESS-SMOG

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced new rules Tuesday to reduce toxic air pollution from oil refineries by forcing operators to adopt new technology that better monitors and controls emissions. By Matthew Daly. AP Photos.

PUERTO RICO-POLICE CORRUPTION

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico --Already undergoing federally mandated reform, Puerto Rico's police department faces an overhaul after a new wave of arrests in an agency widely accused of corruption and other abuses. By Danica Coto. AP Photos.

MEXICO-YOLANDA'S KIDNAPPING

AHUEHUEPAN, Mexico -- More than 25,000 Mexicans have disappeared in recent years, and a lucky few have survived kidnappings. When Luis Alberto Castillo was abducted, his wife tried to gain his freedom -- and fell into her own harrowing ordeal. Most survivors are unwilling to tell their stories. Yolanda Alvarez Antunez is one of the few to step forward. By E. Eduardo Castillo. AP Photos.

MORMONS HISTORY

SALT LAKE CITY -- The Mormon church's renovated history museum set to reopen this week features a small and surprising display about an uncomfortable part of the faith's history that for generations has been glossed over: polygamy. By Brady McCombs.

NICARAGUA-MISKITO INDIANS-PHOTO GALLERY

WASPAM, Nicaragua -- Nicaragua's normally sleepy northern Caribbean coast has erupted in deadly clashes between Miskito Indians and settlers from the country's west. With photo gallery by Esteban Felix.

BUSINESS:

RALPH LAUREN-NEW CEO

NEW YORK -- Ralph Lauren is handing off his title as CEO of the fashion and home decor empire that he founded nearly 50 years ago. The New York-based company announced Tuesday that Stefan Larsson, the global president of Gap's thriving low-price Old Navy chain, will take on the role. The change will be effective in November, and Larsson will report to Lauren who will continue to drive the company's vision and strategy as executive chairman and chief creative officer. By Retail Writer Anne D'Innocenzio. AP Photos.

VW-HISTORY OF DECEPTION

WASHINGTON -- Volkswagen is far from the first company to stand accused of trying to game required emissions tests. Almost since the passage of the Clean Air Act in 1970, major manufacturers of cars, trucks and heavy equipment have been caught for using what regulators call "defeat devices" -- typically programing a vehicle's on-board computer to boost horsepower or fuel mileage by belching out dirtier exhaust than allowed. By Michael Biesecker. AP Photos.

With: VOLKSWAGEN-CONGRESS.

UAW-FIAT CHRYSLER

DETROIT -- The next two days will be critical in deciding the fate of a new four-year contract between Fiat Chrysler and the United Auto Workers. By Auto Writer Tom Krisher. AP Photos.

With: FIAT CHRYSLER-FLAWED REPORTS.

DRIVERLESS CAR DRIVERS

MOUNTAIN VIEW, California -- After a friend recommended that he join a secret Google project six years ago, Brian Torcellini suddenly found himself on the road to an occupational oxymoron. He became a driver in a driverless car. Torcellini, 31, leads a crew of test, or "safety," drivers who are legally required to ride in Google's fleet of 48 robot cars. They only take control in emergencies. Otherwise, they make observations that help the Internet company's engineers program the cars to navigate the roads without human assistance. By Technology Writer Michael Liedtke. AP Photos.

TESLA-MODEL X

FREMONT, California -- Electric vehicle maker Tesla Motors has mastered the sporty two-seater and the elegant sedan. Now, it wants to conquer the family hauler. Tesla's Model X -- one of the only all-electric SUVs on the market -- was officially unveiled Tuesday night near the company's California factory. SUVs were delivered to the first six buyers. By Auto Writer Dee-Ann Durbin. AP Photos.

GUEST WORKERS-APOLOGY

NEW ORLEANS -- A U.S.-based oil rig repair company has apologized to hundreds of Indian guest workers drawn to the Gulf Coast through false promises and housed in squalid conditions to help with damage repairs after Hurricane Katrina, a law center says. By Cain Burdeau.

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT:

FILM-THE MARTIAN

TORONTO -- "The Martian" was briefly stranded in Hollywood development when Ridley Scott reached out to Matt Damon, the star attached to the stalled projected. The script by Drew Goddard ("Cabin in the Woods") from Andy Weir's novel was full of the kind of nerdy humor and science geekery that few would associate with the masculine epics Scott is known for. But the 77-year-old British director tends not to concern himself with such trifles. The unexpected combinations of talent that went into making "The Martian" are fitting for a movie of such hybrid entertainments. It's a space tale more grounded in science fact than fiction; a 3-D popcorn movie full of mathematics; an ode to science that's funny. By AP Film Writer Jake Coyle. AP Photos.

PEOPLE-CHRISTINA AGUILERA

NEW YORK -- Christina Aguilera has visited Haiti, Rwanda and Guatemala on relief effort trips, but last week in Ecuador she not only offered support to struggling and hungry children -- she also connected with her roots. By Music Writer Mesfin Fekadu. AP Photos.

PEOPLE-KATE WINSLET

TORONTO -- There are so many reasons for Kate Winslet to feel great about the new "Steve Jobs" movie that it doesn't matter that critics panned the 2013 film "Jobs," which was also about the Apple Computer co-founder. By John Carucci. AP Photos. AP Video.

SPORTS:

FIFA INVESTIGATION

ZURICH -- Four years after stepping down in disgrace, former FIFA vice president Jack Warner is banned from soccer for life, accused of repeated acts of bribery related to World Cup bidding votes. By Rob Harris. AP Photos.

RIO 2016-FILTHY WATER

RIO DE JANEIRO -- Rio's sewage-filled waters are not only a problem for next year's Olympics. Organizers of Brazil's stop on the World Surf League hope to move their event from a beach at Barra da Tijuca to a clean beach farther west. By Stephen Wade. AP Photo.