UKRAINE | Updates from the past 24 hours on the Russian invasion of Ukraine:
- Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelensky says that Russian shelling of residential areas in the city of Kharkiv constitutes a war crime.
- Satellite images from the American firm Maxar Technologies show a roughly 40-mile-long convoy of Russian tanks and armored vehicles approaching the Ukrainian capital Kyiv.
- FIFA, the global soccer governing body, and UEFA, the European soccer governing body, have jointly announced that Russian national and club teams have been suspended from competition until further notice.
- Talks between Ukrainian and Russian officials held yesterday on the Belarusian border concluded with no immediate breakthrough on ending the Ukrainian crisis.
- International Criminal Court Prosecutor Karim Khan said yesterday he intends to open in investigation as soon as possible into war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by any party to the conflict on any part of the territory of Ukraine.
- Ukrainian officials yesterday submitted an official request to join the European Union.
- The International Olympic Committee has recommended that all Russian and Belarusian athletes should be banned from all international competitions while the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues.
CLIMATE | A major new report from the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released yesterday suggests that the effects of global climate change are occurring faster than humans and ecosystems can adapt and that continued delays in reducing greenhouse gas emissions will mean missing the chance to prevent large-scale irreversible damage and suffering. U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres called the more than 3,600-page report "an atlas of human suffering" and a "damning indictment of failed climate leadership." [full report] [more]
GOP | Republican Congressional leaders, including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy yesterday denounced the appearance of two fellow Republicans at a Florida meeting of a group that has promoted antisemitism and white supremacy. Both Representatives Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., and Paul Gosar, R-Ariz., spoke at the far-right America First Political Action Conference at a hotel in Orlando, Florida, over the weekend. [more]
STATE OF THE UNION | U.S. President Joe Biden will deliver his first State of the Union address before Congress tonight at 9pm EST. Biden, who is facing declining approval ratings according to recent polls, is expected to focus much of his remarks on bringing down costs for American families as inflation surges and on the Russian invasion of Ukraine. [more]
EGYPT | Egyptian authorities yesterday announced an increase in transit fees for ships passing through the Suez Canal. The largest increase -- 10% -- was imposed on ships carrying liquefied petroleum gas, chemicals, and other bulk liquids. [more]
COVID-19 | The governors of California, Oregon and Washington jointly announced on Monday that their states will drop COVID-19-related mask mandates in schools on March 12. All three states will allow local school districts to implement their own mask mandates on an as-needed basis. [more]
CONGRESSIONAL HONOR | The U.S. House of Representatives voted yesterday to award the Congressional Gold Medal to the 6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion -- the only all-female, Black unit to serve in Europe during World War II. [more]
TEXAS | Congressional and state-wide office primaries are being held in Texas today in what is being watched closely as an early indicator of opinion on both major political parties in the 2022 midterm election year. [more]
BASEBALL | Major League Baseball officials have extended their deadline to reach a labor agreement with players to 5pm today. [more]
ASTRONOMY | European scientists have released information and maps from a detailed study of objects in about a quarter of the northern sky. Using the Low Frequency Array (LOFAR) pan-European radio telescope, the scientists found more than 4.4 million objects -- mostly rapidly growing new stars and galaxies that harbor black holes. [full study] [more]
TODAY IN HISTORY | Yellowstone National Park, which comprises portions of the western U.S. states of Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho, and which was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1978, was established by the U.S. Congress as the country's — and the world's — first national park on this date in 1872. [more history]