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Live updates: Queen Elizabeth II dies, Charles becomes king

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Live updates: Queen Elizabeth II dies, Charles becomes king

LONDON – The head of the Anglican church says the death of Queen Elizabeth II is a moment of enormous change for Britain and the world.

The queen – who was monarch and supreme governor of the Church of England — died Thursday at 96 after 70 years on the throne.

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby says that for many people, “a part of our lives we’ve taken for granted as being permanent is no longer there.”

He says that with her death “there is an enormous shift in the world around us, in how we see it and how we understand ourselves.”

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KEY DEVELOPMENTS:

— Prince Charles became king upon his mother’s death

— Will Charles be loved by his subjects, like his mother was?

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— Queen Elizabeth II, a monarch bound by duty, dies at 96

— Elizabeth has been the only monarch most people in Britain know

— ‘A constant in my life’: World mourns Queen Elizabeth II

— Biden is 13th and final US president to meet Queen Elizabeth II

— Find more AP coverage here: https://apnews.com/hub/queen-elizabeth-ii

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OTHER DEVELOPMENTS:

NEW DELHI — The Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, on Friday expressed his deep sadness over the death of Queen Elizabeth II and offered his condolences to her family and the British people.

In a letter to King Charles III, the Dalai Lama said “I remember seeing photographs of her coronation in magazines when I was young in Tibet.”

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He added that “your mother lived a meaningful life with dignity, grace, a strong sense of service and a warm heart, qualities we all should treasure.”

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COPENHAGEN, Denmark — Queen Margrethe II of Denmark, whose 50-year reign is now Europe’s longest, called Britain’s late Queen Elizabeth II “a towering figure among European monarchs and a great inspiration to us all.”

“We shall miss her terribly,” Margrethe said in a statement released by the Danish royal household. Elizabeth died Thursday at 96 after 70 years on the British throne.

In neighboring Sweden, King Carl XVI Gustaf said the British monarch had “an outstanding devotion and sense of duty” and Norway’s King Harald said Elizabeth devotedly “accompanied the British people through joys and sorrows, in good times and bad times.”

Finland’s President Sauli Niinisto said Elizabeth “witnessed and shaped history like few others. Her sense of duty and devotion to service are an example to us all.”

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BEIJING — Chinese President Xi Jinping expressed condolences to the British royal family over the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

He noted in the statement Friday that Elizabeth was the first British monarch to visit China, which she did in 1986. “Her death is a great loss to the British people.”

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The statement added that China was willing to work with King Charles III as an opportunity to promote bilateral relations and benefit the two countries and their people.

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang also sent a message of condolence to British Prime Minister Liz Truss.

The queen’s death Thursday comes amid tensions between Britain and China over human rights, trade and China’s relentless crackdown on free speech and the political opposition in the former British colony of Hong Kong.

The Queen’s death was a top trending topic on Chinese social media, with many people saying her death marks the end of an era.

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MANILA, Philippines — Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. expressed his profound sadness Friday over the queen’s death saying she “exemplified to the world a true monarch’s great dignity, commitment to duty, and devotion to all those in her realm.”

“We, together with many Filipinos living and working in England, though not subjects of the Queen, have found ourselves having developed a great sense of affection for her as a Queen, as mother, and as a grandmother,” Marcos Jr. said in a statement posted on Facebook. “The world has lost a true figure of majesty in what she demonstrated throughout her life and throughout her reign as Queen.”

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CANBERRA, Australia — Malcolm Turnbull, the leader of a failed campaign to have an Australian president replace the British monarch as Australia’s head of state and who later became prime minister, came close to tears on Friday in paying tribute to Queen Elizabeth II.

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Turnbull was chair of the Australian Republican Movement in 1999 when Australians voted at a referendum against the nation becoming a republic, severing its constitutional ties to the queen. He was prime minister between 2015 and 2018, during which time the queen gave him a photograph of herself with her husband Prince Philip.

Turnbull’s voice trembled as he recalled looking at the photo on Thursday night before he and his wife Lucy Turnbull went to bed with a sense of dread because of news from Buckingham Palace of the queen’s failing health.

“I took the portrait of the queen out and set it up and we just thought, ‘What an amazing life. What amazing leadership,’” Turnbull told Australian Broadcasting Corp.

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TORONTO — Elton John paid tribute to Queen Elizabeth II at his concert in Toronto on Thursday night, saying he was inspired by her and is sad she is gone.

“She led the country through some of our greatest and darkest moments with grace and decency and genuine caring,” John said.

“I feel very sad that that she won’t be with me anymore, but I’m glad she’s at peace,” he said. “I’m glad she’s at rest and she deserves it. She worked bloody hard.”

The singer-songwriter then performed his 1974 track “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me.”

John was knighted by the queen in 1998, a year after the death of his friend Princess Diana. Prince Charles also anointed the musician and charity patron as a member of the Order of the Companions of Honor last year.

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Condolences poured in from around the world following the death of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II.

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese mourned Queen Elizabeth II as the only only reigning monarch most Australians have known and the only one to ever to visit their country.

“And over the course of a remarkable seven decades, Her Majesty was a rare and reassuring constant amidst rapid change,” he said. “Through the noise and turbulence of the years, she embodied and exhibited a timeless decency and an enduring calm.”

The British monarch is Australia’s official head of state, although these days the role is considered primarily ceremonial.

President Joe Biden signed the condolence book at the British Embassy in Washington, and his wife, Jill Biden, brought a bouquet of flowers. The president was overheard telling embassy staff, “We mourn for all of you. She was a great lady.”

French President Emmanuel Macron hailed the queen’s “immutable moral authority,” her intimate knowledge of and the stability she brought “across the fluctuations and upheavals of politics, a permanence with the scent of eternity.”

Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness, who announced this year the British commonwealth intended to become fully independent, said: “We are saddened that we will not see her light again, but we will remember her historic reign.”

Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said Queen Elizabeth II was “the very heart and soul of the United Kingdom” and that her passing was greatly mourned by everyone in the city-state.

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Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro decreed three days of mourning and said Elizabeth “was a queen for all of us.”

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol tweeted their condolences, and Malaysia’s Foreign Affairs Minister Saifuddin Abdullah mourned the queen on Facebook as “a towering figure” dedicated to serving the people of the UK and the Commonwealth.

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The foreign affairs minister for Myanmar’s National Unity Government, an underground parallel government spearheading the fight for democracy in Myanmar against its military-led government, posted her condolences on Twitter.

“I’m deeply saddened by the news of the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. On behalf of @NUGMyanmar and the people of Myanmar, I extend our deepest sympathies to the Royal Family and the people of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth,” wrote Zin Mar Aung.

Myanmar, then called Burma, gained independence from British colonial rule in 1948.

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DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — The king and crown prince of Saudi Arabia have offered their condolences over the death of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II.

Statements carried early Friday in Saudi state media quoted King Salman as saying that Queen Elizabeth was “a model of leadership that will be immortalized in the history.”

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He added: “We recall with appreciation the efforts of the deceased in consolidating the friendship and cooperation relations between our two friendly countries, as well as the high international status that Her Majesty enjoyed throughout the decades during which she acceded to the throne of your friendly country.”

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WELLINGTON, New Zealand — New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern told reporters she was awoken a little before 5 a.m. by a police officer shining a torch into her bedroom to tell her the news of Queen Elizabeth II’s death.

Under New Zealand’s constitutional arrangements, the queen was also New Zealand’s monarch and head of state.

“The last days of the queen’s life captures who she was in so many ways,” Ardern said. “Working until the very end on behalf of the people she loved.”

Ardern said the queen was an extraordinary woman who she’d remember for her laughter. Ardern said that like many other people, she was feeling not only deep sadness but also deep gratitude.

“Here is a woman who gave her life, utterly, to the service of others. And regardless of what anyone thinks of the role of monarchies around the world, there is undeniably, I think here, a display of someone who gave everything on behalf of her people, and her people included the people of Aotearoa New Zealand.”

Ardern said New Zealand had moved into a period of official mourning, and would hold a state memorial service after the official funeral in Britain.

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LONDON — Several sporting events in Britain were called off as a mark of respect following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

The BMW PGA Championship golf event immediately suspended play Thursday and the course and practice facilities will be closed Friday.

The England and Wales Cricket Board said Friday’s play in the second test between England and South Africa at the Oval would not take place.

Horse racing meetings in Britain were suspended on Thursday night and Friday, and domestic rugby matches in England and Scotland were called off on Thursday and games will not be played over the weekend, either.

Friday’s stage in cycling’s Tour of Britain was canceled, with a decision on the final two stages over the weekend to be taken in due course.

In New York, a moment of silence was held before the U.S. Open women’s semifinals Thursday night. “We would like to pause to remember Queen Elizabeth II,” the stadium announcer said. “Our thoughts are with the people today of the United Kingdom. Remember to be part of us in a second of silence.”

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Lawyers for the US tell a UK court why WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange should face spying charges

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Lawyers for the US tell a UK court why WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange should face spying charges

LONDON (AP) — WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange won’t find out until next month at the earliest whether he can challenge extradition to the U.S. on spying charges, or if his long legal battle in Britain has run out of road.

Two High Court judges said Wednesday they would take time to consider their verdict after a two-day hearing in which Assange’s lawyers argued sending him to the United States would risk a “flagrant denial of justice.”

Attorneys for the U.S., where Assange has been indicted on espionage charges, said he put innocent lives at risk and went beyond journalism in his bid to solicit, steal and indiscriminately publish classified U.S. government documents.

Assange’s lawyers asked the High Court to grant him a new appeal — his last roll of the legal dice in the saga that has kept him in a British high-security prison for the past five years.

The judges overseeing the case reserved their decision, and a ruling on Assange’s future is not expected until March at the earliest.

If judges Victoria Sharp and Jeremy Johnson rule against Assange, he can ask the European Court of Human Rights to block his extradition — though supporters worry he could be put on a plane to the U.S. before that happens, because the British government has already signed an extradition order.

The 52-year-old Australian has been indicted on 17 charges of espionage and one charge of computer misuse over his website’s publication of a trove of classified U.S. documents almost 15 years ago. American prosecutors allege Assange encouraged and helped U.S. Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning steal diplomatic cables and military files that WikiLeaks published, putting lives at risk.

Lawyer Clair Dobbin, representing the U.S. government, said Wednesday that Assange damaged U.S. security and intelligence services and “created a grave and imminent risk” by releasing the hundreds of thousands of documents — risks that could harm and lead to the arbitrary detention of innocent people, many of whom lived in war zones or under repressive regimes.

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Dobbin added that in encouraging Manning and others to hack into government computers and steal from them, Assange was “going a very considerable way beyond” a journalist gathering information.

Assange was “not someone who has just set up an online box to which people can provide classified information,” she said. “The allegations are that he sought to encourage theft and hacking that would benefit WikiLeaks.”

Assange’s supporters maintain he is a secrecy-busting journalist who exposed U.S. military wrongdoing in Iraq and Afghanistan. They have long argued that the prosecution is politically motivated and he won’t get a fair trial in the U.S.

Assange’s lawyers argued on the first day of the hearing on Tuesday that American authorities are seeking to punish him for WikiLeaks’ “exposure of criminality on the part of the U.S. government on an unprecedented scale,” including torture and killings.

Lawyer Edward Fitzgerald said there is “a real risk he may suffer a flagrant denial of justice” if he is sent to the U.S.

Dobbin said the prosecution is based on law and evidence, and has remained consistent despite the changes of government in the U.S. during the legal battle.

She added that the First Amendment does not confer immunity on journalists who break the law. Media outlets that went through the process of redacting the documents before publishing them are not being prosecuted, she said.

Assange’s lawyers say he could face up to 175 years in prison if convicted, though American authorities have said the sentence is likely to be much shorter.

Assange was absent from court on both days because he is unwell, WikiLeaks said. Stella Assange, his wife, said he had wanted to attend, but was “not in good condition.”

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Assange’s family and supporters say his physical and mental health have suffered during more than a decade of legal battles, including seven years in self-exile in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London.

“Julian is a political prisoner and he has to be released,” said Stella Assange, who married the WikiLeaks founder in prison in 2022.

“They’re putting Julian into the hands of the country and of the people who plotted his assassination,” she added, referring to unproven claims by Assange’s lawyers that he was a target of a CIA plot to kidnap or kill him while he was in the Ecuadorian Embassy.

Supporters holding “Free Julian Assange” signs and chanting “there is only one decision — no extradition” protested outside the High Court building for a second day.

Assange’s legal troubles began in 2010, when he was arrested in London at the request of Sweden, which wanted to question him about allegations of rape and sexual assault made by two women. In 2012, Assange jumped bail and sought refuge inside the Ecuadorian Embassy.

The relationship between Assange and his hosts eventually soured, and he was evicted from the embassy in April 2019. British police immediately arrested and imprisoned him for breaching bail in 2012. Sweden dropped the sex crimes investigations in November 2019 because so much time had elapsed.

A U.K. district court judge rejected the U.S. extradition request in 2021 on the grounds that Assange was likely to kill himself if held under harsh U.S. prison conditions. Higher courts overturned that decision after getting assurances from the U.S. about his treatment. The British government signed an extradition order in June 2022.

Meanwhile, the Australian parliament last week called for Assange to be allowed to return to his homeland.

Andrew Wilkie, an Australian lawmaker who attended the hearing, said he hoped that sent a strong message to the U.K. and U.S. governments to end the legal fight. “This has gone on long enough,” he said.

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Associated Press video journalists Kwiyeon Ha and Jo Kearney contributed to this report.

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Biden to create cybersecurity standards for nation’s ports as concerns grow over vulnerabilities

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Biden to create cybersecurity standards for nation’s ports as concerns grow over vulnerabilities

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden on Wednesday signed an executive order and created a federal rule aimed at better securing the nation’s ports from potential cyberattacks.

The administration is outlining a set of cybersecurity regulations that port operators must comply with across the country, not unlike standardized safety regulations that seek to prevent injury or damage to people and infrastructure.

“We want to ensure there are similar requirements for cyber, when a cyberattack can cause just as much if not more damage than a storm or another physical threat,” said Anne Neuberger, deputy national security adviser at the White House.

Nationwide, ports employ roughly 31 million people and contribute $5.4 trillion to the economy, and could be left vulnerable to a ransomware or other brand of cyberattack, Neuberger said. The standardized set of requirements is designed to help protect against that.

The new requirements are part of the federal government’s focus on modernizing how critical infrastructure like power grids, ports and pipelines are protected as they are increasingly managed and controlled online, often remotely. There is no set of nationwide standards that govern how operators should protect against potential attacks online.

The threat continues to grow. Hostile activity in cyberspace — from spying to the planting of malware to infect and disrupt a country’s infrastructure — has become a hallmark of modern geopolitical rivalry.

For example, in 2021, the operator of the nation’s largest fuel pipeline had to temporarily halt operations after it fell victim to a ransomware attack in which hackers hold a victim’s data or device hostage in exchange for money. The company, Colonial Pipeline, paid $4.4 million to a Russia-based hacker group, though Justice Department officials later recovered much of the money.

Ports, too, are vulnerable. In Australia last year, a cyber incident forced one of the country’s largest port operators to suspend operations for three days.

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In the U.S., roughly 80% of the giant cranes used to lift and haul cargo off ships onto U.S. docks come from China, and are controlled remotely, said Admiral John Vann, commander of the U.S. Coast Guard’s cyber command. That leaves them vulnerable to attack, he said.

Late last month, U.S. officials said they had disrupted a state-backed Chinese effort to plant malware that could be used to damage civilian infrastructure. Vann said this type of potential attack was a concern as officials pushed for new standards, but they are also worried about the possibility for criminal activity.

The new standards, which will be subject to a public comment period, will be required for any port operator and there will be enforcement actions for failing to comply with the standards, though the officials did not outline them. They require port operators to notify authorities when they have been victimized by a cyberattack. The actions also give the Coast Guard, which regulates the nation’s ports, the ability to respond to cyberattacks.

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Jill Biden is announcing $100 million in funding for research and development into women’s health

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Jill Biden is announcing $100 million in funding for research and development into women’s health

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jill Biden on Wednesday announced $100 million in federal funding for research and development into women’s health as part of a new White House initiative that she is heading up.

The money is the first major deliverable of the White House Initiative on Women’s Health Research, which was announced late last year. The money comes from the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health, or ARPA-H, which is under the federal Department of Health and Human Services.

The first lady announced the ARPA-H Sprint for Women’s Health during an appearance in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Biden has said women don’t know enough about their health because the research historically has been underfunded and lacking. The White House initiative aims to change the approach to and increase funding for women’s health research.

The $100 million will be used to invest early in “life-changing” work being done by women’s health researchers and startup companies that cannot get private support, Biden said.

“We will build a health care system that puts women and their lived experiences at its center,” she said. “Where no woman or girl has to hear that ‘it’s all in your head,’ or, ‘it’s just stress.’” Where women aren’t just an after-thought, but a first-thought. Where women don’t just survive with chronic conditions, but lead long and healthy lives.”

President Joe Biden created the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health in 2022 to work on advancing solutions to health issues. The agency is part of what he called his “ unity agenda.”

In the coming weeks, the agency will solicit ideas for groundbreaking research and development to address women’s health, according to the White House.

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The first lady said last year when the White House initiative was announced in November that it grew out of meeting she had had with Maria Shriver, a women’s health advocate and former California first lady. Shriver, Biden said, spoke of the need for a public-private effort to close the gaps in women’s health research. Shriver also participated in Wednesday’s announcement in Massachusetts.

The White House Initiative on Women’s Health Research is led by Jill Biden and the White House Gender Policy Council.

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