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WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. special operations forces have killed a senior Islamic State group official and 10 other terrorist operatives in remote northern Somalia, the Biden administration announced Thursday. The operation carried out on Wednesday targeted Bilal al-Sudani, a key financial facilitator for the global terrorist organization, in a mountainous cave complex.

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — NASA marked the 20th anniversary of the space shuttle Columbia tragedy with somber ceremonies and remembrances during its annual tribute to fallen astronauts on Thursday. More than 100 people gathered under a gray sky at Kennedy Space Center to remember not only Columbia’s crew of seven, but the 18 other astronauts killed in the line of duty. NASA’s two shuttle accidents account for more than half of the names carved into the black granite of the Space Mirror Memorial; plane crashes are to blame for the rest.

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Heavy, wet snow — part of a storm system that spawned tornadoes in the Houston area — has covered roads, vehicles, houses and buildings Wednesday from central and northern Indiana into much of southeastern Michigan. About six inches of snow was expected to fall on the Detroit area, while four inches was reported before noon in eastern Indiana, just southwest of Fort Wayne, said Maddi Johnson of the National Weather Service in northern Indiana.

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska’s statewide law enforcement agency is investigating after two troopers escorted one of the state's top school principals to a hospital for a mental health assessment based on a bogus court order, officials said.

WASHINGTON (AP) — In what would be a reversal, the Biden administration is poised to approve sending M1 Abrams tanks to Ukraine, U.S. officials said Tuesday, as international reluctance to send tanks to the battlefront against the Russians begins to erode. A decision to send a bit more than 30 tanks could be announced as soon as Wednesday, though it could take months for the tanks to be delivered.

MONTEREY PARK, Calif. (AP) — Investigators searching for a motive Monday in the worst mass shooting in Los Angeles County history said the gunman was previously arrested for illegally owning a firearm, had a rifle at home, hundreds of rounds of ammunition and appeared to be manufacturing gun silencers. Los Angeles Sheriff Robert Luna said investigators had not yet established why 72-year-old Huu Can Tran gunned down patrons Saturday night at a ballroom dance hall he was said to frequent in Monterey Park, where tens of thousands attended Lunar New Year festivities earlier that evening.

HALF MOON BAY, Calif. (AP) — Seven people were killed in two related shootings Monday at a mushroom farm and a trucking firm in a coastal community south of San Francisco, and a suspect was in custody, officials said. San Mateo County Board of Supervisors President Dave Pine says four people were killed at the farm and three at the trucking business on the outskirts of Half Moon Bay, a city about 30 miles (48 kilometers) south of San Francisco. The police have arrested 67-year-old Chunli Zhao in connection with the shooting, Pine said.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An 18-year-old man was charged with murder in Monday's killing of two teenagers at an alternative educational program for at-risk youth in Des Moines. Police said Preston Walls of Des Moines is charged with two counts of murder and one count of attempted murder in the Monday shooting at Starts Right Here. Two teenagers — an 18-year-old male and a 16-year-old male — were killed in the attack. The program’s founder, 49-year-old William Holmes — a rapper who goes by the stage name Will Keeps — was injured.

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The U.S. government has denied a request from a group of environmental organizations to immediately apply proposed ship-speed restrictions in an effort to save a vanishing species of whale. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is considering new rules designed to stop large ships from colliding with North Atlantic right whales. The whales number less than 340, and they are vulnerable to ship strikes and entanglement in fishing gear.

MONTEREY PARK, Calif. (AP) — It was a joyful kickoff to the first Lunar New Year celebration in Monterey Park since before the pandemic, with large crowds filling the streets in the majority Chinese American city near Los Angeles for live entertainment, carnival rides and plenty of food. But the celebrations were marred by tragedy Saturday night after a gunman entered a ballroom dance hall and opened fire, killing 10 people, wounding 10 more and sending panicked revelers into the streets.

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