AP News in Brief at 9:04 p.m. EST

AP PHOTOS: Women’s marches flood parks, streets worldwide

Masses of people flooded parks, streets and city squares around the world Saturday marching in solidarity in a show of empowerment and a stand against President Donald Trump.

The crowds of women, men and children stood in the rain, snow and sun. Many wore pink “pussyhats” to mock the new president.

As they moved through streets or gathered in parks, they voiced support for women and immigrants’ rights, health care, Black Lives Matter, education and other causes. Many carried signs with messages such as “Love trumps hate” and “Women won’t back down.”

Parts of some cities were brought to a halt as marchers packed train stations and snarled traffic. In Washington, turnout was so big that the designated march route alongside the National Mall was impassable.

Here are some of the images of the day in the U.S. and around the world.


Over 1 million join anti-Trump women’s marches worldwide

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a global exclamation of defiance and solidarity, more than 1 million people rallied at women’s marches in the nation’s capital and cities around the world Saturday to send President Donald Trump an emphatic message on his first full day in office that they won’t let his agenda go unchallenged.

“Welcome to your first day, we will not go away!” marchers in Washington chanted.

Many of the women came wearing pink, pointy-eared “pussyhats” to mock the new president. Plenty of men joined in, too, contributing to surprising numbers everywhere from New York, Philadelphia, Chicago and Los Angeles to Mexico City, Paris, Berlin, London, Prague and Sydney.

The Washington rally alone attracted over 500,000 people according to city officials — apparently more than Trump’s inauguration drew on Friday. It was easily one of the biggest demonstrations in the city’s history, and as night fell, not a single arrest was reported.

The international outpouring served to underscore the degree to which Trump has unsettled people in both hemispheres.


Trump praises the CIA, bristles over inaugural crowd counts

LANGLEY, Va. (AP) — On his first full day in office, President Donald Trump on Saturday berated the media over its coverage of his inauguration, and turned a bridge-building first visit to CIA headquarters into an airing of grievances about “dishonest” journalists. But it was Trump who spread inaccuracies about the size of the crowds at his swearing in.

Standing in front of a memorial for fallen CIA agents, Trump assured intelligence officials, “I am so behind you.” He made no mention of his repeated criticism of the intelligence agencies following the election, including his public challenges of their high-confidence assessment that Russia meddled in the White House race to help him win.

“There is nobody that feels stronger about the intelligence community and CIA than Donald Trump,” he said, blaming any suggestion of a “feud” on the media.

Trump’s decision to travel to CIA headquarters so quickly after taking office was seen as an attempt at a fresh start with the intelligence agencies he will now rely on for guidance as he makes weighty national security decisions. Following his private meeting with top CIA leaders, Trump said the U.S. had been “restrained” in its efforts to combat terrorism, calling the threat “a level of evil we haven’t seen.”

But in unscripted, stream-of-consciousness remarks, Trump appeared more focused on settling scores with the media.


From London to LA, women’s marches pack cities big and small

CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago. Oklahoma City. London. Los Angeles.

Across the globe, cities big and small saw throngs of women, men and children take to the streets Saturday in a show of unity and support for women’s rights. The swarms of marchers came together in the sunshine and rain to rally against sexism, racism and hatred and to protest President Donald Trump.

The crowds were so large that some U.S. cities ground to a halt as demonstrators overwhelmed streets, train stations and parks. The more than 600 “sister marches” were held in conjunction with the Women’s March on Washington a day after Trump’s inauguration.

Here’s a closer look at some of those marches around the world:



Trump’s DC hotel a hub of activity and ethics questions

WASHINGTON (AP) — Red, white and blue balloons rained down over crystal chandeliers in the soaring atrium of the Trump International Hotel at midnight Friday — “a new inaugural tradition,” its social media account promised.

But while President Donald Trump’s hotel in Washington did serve as a hub of inaugural activities, it also stands as ground zero for what top Democrats and some ethics advisers see as his unique web of conflicts of interest.

Trump’s lease with the federal government to develop and operate a hotel inside the historic Old Post Office building expressly prohibits any elected official from benefiting from the property, yet Trump has not divested from his company or this particular project.

The government’s General Services Administration previously said it would refrain from commenting on the apparent contract violation until Trump took office, which he did at noon Friday. The agency did not respond to requests for comment.

“I think it’s a simple matter of amending the lease,” said Patrick Keogh, a real estate investor in Austin, Texas, who has developed projects for the GSA and other federal agencies. He said Ivanka Trump, the president’s daughter and chief negotiator on the hotel, should ask the GSA to exempt her father from that provision of the contract. The GSA should make the process public and transparent, Keogh said.


‘Is God mad?’ Mississippi tornado wreaks havoc; kills 4

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) — Rain was pouring down in the pre-dawn darkness, and the wind was picking up as Darryl McMorris ran for his daughters’ bedroom. The windows started blowing out as he dove on top of his girls, grabbing one under each arm as he tried to protect them.

“As soon as I did that it seemed like we were flying in the air,” he recalled Saturday. Walls began to collapse and the house began to blow apart as his daughters screamed. But he held on tight.

When the tornado finished ripping its way through their Hattiesburg home he and the two girls were under a wall. Their house appears to be a total loss, bedding tossed 50 feet into a tree and their oldest daughter asking, “Is God mad at us?” But they’re alive.

“I don’t see how we survived this,” said his fiancee Shanise.

Across the tornado’s devastating path, families were taking stock of the damage, hugging friends and neighbors, grieving over the remains of their homes and in many cases mourning those killed.


Iraqi forces eye tougher fight in Mosul’s west

MOSUL, Iraq (AP) — A crowd of Iraqi officers looked out at the Tigris River Friday from a balcony of Mosul’s Nineveh International hotel. Just over three months ago, the men were some 45 kilometers (28 miles) away in a cluster of desert villages on the edge of Nineveh plain.

“Our message to the rest of Mosul’s residents is that victory is near,” said Lt. Gen. Abdul-Ghani al-Asadi, on a celebratory tour after the city’s east was declared largely liberated on Wednesday.

The progress of Iraqi forces, halting at first, sped up this month as they closed in on the river that roughly divides Mosul into eastern and western halves. But that momentum is unlikely to be sustained and the city’s western half is poised to be a much tougher fight for the already fatigued forces.


When Sgt. Maj. Hussam Abdul-Latif pushed into Andalus on the morning of Jan. 16, he said the fight for the small neighborhood about a kilometer from the Tigris was nothing like his earlier battles in Mosul. This time, he said most IS fighters here fled hours before his troops arrived.


Gambia’s defeated leader leaves country, ends standoff

BANJUL, Gambia (AP) — Gambia’s defeated leader Yahya Jammeh and his family headed into political exile Saturday night, ending a 22-year reign of fear and a post-election political standoff that threatened to provoke a regional military intervention when he clung to power.

As he mounted the stairs to the plane, he turned to the crowd, kissed his Quran and waved one last time to supporters, including soldiers who cried at his departure.

The flight came almost 24 hours after Jammeh announced on state television he was ceding power to the newly inaugurated Adama Barrow, in response to mounting international pressure for his ouster.

Though tens of thousands of Gambians had fled the country during his rule, Jammeh supporters flocked to the airport to see him walk the red carpet to his plane. Women shouted: “Don’t go! Don’t go!”

Jammeh landed in Guinea an hour later. He and his family then took off for Malabo, the capital of Equatorial Guinea, according to an airport official who spoke on condition of anonymity because the official was not authorized to speak to the press. Equatorial Guinea, unlike Guinea, is not a state party to the International Criminal Court.


Pope: I’ll judge Trump after we see what he does

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis has told an interviewer that he’ll wait to see what U.S. President Donald Trump does before forming his opinion.

In an interview published Saturday evening by Spanish newspaper El Pais, Francis says he doesn’t like “judging people early. We’ll see what Trump does.”

Asked about populist-style political leaders emerging in the United States and Europe, Francis warned against seeking a savior in times of crisis.

He said Hitler in the 1930s’ Germany “was voted for by the people and then he destroyed the people.”

Francis laments that in crises “we look for a savior to give us back identity, and we defend ourselves with walls, barbed-wire fences, from other peoples.”


AP INTERVIEW: New Gambia leader to set up truth commission

DAKAR, Senegal (AP) — Gambia’s new president Adama Barrow said Saturday that he will launch a truth and reconciliation commission to investigate the alleged human rights abuses of Yahya Jammeh’s 22-year regime.

In an interview with The Associated Press just hours after Jammeh finally acquiesced to political exile, Barrow, 51, said it is too soon to tell whether the former president could face trial at the International Criminal Court or elsewhere.

“We aren’t talking about prosecution here. We are talking about getting a truth and reconciliation commission,” he said. “Before you can act, you have to get the truth, to get the facts together.”

The exact terms of Jammeh’s departure remained under wraps Saturday apart from his destination: Guinea.

“What is fundamental here is he will live in a foreign country as of now,” said Barrow, visibly tired and wearing a powder blue traditional West African boubou robe and white leather slip-on shoes.