AP sources: Special counsel on Russia probe expanding scope

WASHINGTON (AP) — The special counsel investigating possible ties between President Donald Trump's campaign and Russia's government is expanding its scope.

The Associated Press has learned that special counsel Robert Mueller has taken over a separate criminal probe involving former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort.

Mueller also may expand his inquiry to investigate the roles of the attorney general and deputy attorney general in the firing of James Comey as FBI director.

The move to consolidate the matters indicates that Mueller is assuming a broad mandate in his new role running the sensational investigation. It's been described to the AP by people familiar with the move but not authorized to discuss it by name.

Manafort was forced out as Trump campaign chairman amid questions about his business dealings years ago in Ukraine.

The Latest: Leaders pledge to boost climate efforts

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PARIS (AP) — Environmental campaigners staged protests against President Donald Trump's decision to pull the United States out of the Paris climate accord, while other nations pledged to double down on their efforts to curb global warming.

In Berlin, Greenpeace activists projected Trump's silhouette onto the side of the U.S. embassy along with the words "#TotalLoser, so sad!"

Hours later German Chancellor Angela Merkel summoned reporters for an impromptu statement in which she called Trump's decision "extremely regrettable and that's putting it very mildly."

But Merkel, whose country hosts this year's international climate summit, said it was now time to look ahead.

She said: "This decision can't and won't stop all those of us who feel obliged to protect the planet."

Anticipating a possible U.S. pullout, officials from China and the European Union — two of the world's major polluters — had prepared a declaration reaffirming their commitment to the 2015 Paris Agreement,