September 21, 2022


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UKRAINE | Today is day 210 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Here are your updates:

  • In a televised address last night, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a partial mobilization of Russia's military reserve forces -- the first such move by Russia since World War II. Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said that up to 300,000 reservists will be called up for active duty. [more]
  • In what is seen as a coordinated move, Russia-backed officials in Ukraine's Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson, and Zaporizhzhia provinces announced yesterday that their regions will hold referendums on joining Russia by the end of next week. [more]

UNITED NATIONS | U.S. President Joe Biden, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky are among the world leaders scheduled to address the 77th United Nations General Assembly today. Zelensky was given permission to provide a pre-recorded address -- an exception to the U.N. requirement that all leaders speak in person. [more]

U.S. ECONOMY | The Federal Reserve is expected to announce an increase of at least three-quarters of a point for its benchmark short-term interest rate today when it concludes its latest two-day policy meeting. [more]

U.S. ELECTION LAW | With measures seen as direct responses to the January 6 attacks on the U.S. Capitol and related objections to the 2020 presidential election results, bills  are under consideration in both the House and Senate that would clarify the role of the vice president in presiding over congressional certification of election results, make it more difficult for lawmakers to object to states' electoral votes or for state legislatures to declare a "failed election," and ensure that there is only a single slate of electors from each state. The House is scheduled to vote on its version of the bills today. [more]

U.S. DRIVING | In a report released yesterday, the National Transportation Safety Board recommended that all new vehicles sold in the U.S. be equipped with blood alcohol monitoring systems. The recommendation would need to be formally enacted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to take effect. [more]

PANDEMIC FRAUD | Federal prosecutors have charged 48 people in Minnesota with conspiracy, wire fraud, and other related charges in connection with what officials say is the largest pandemic-related fraud scheme yet discovered. According to prosecutors, the nonprofit organization Feeding Our Future submitted false claims to receive as much as $250 million in federal funds during the COVID-19 pandemic for providing meals to low-income children when very few meals were actually served. [more]

U.K. ENERGY | U.K. Prime Minister Liz Truss today announced a six-month cap on wholesale energy bills for businesses as part of a package of measures aimed at mitigating the effect of soaring energy prices for both people and companies. The price cap is set to take effect on October 1. [more]

HURRICANE FIONA | The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has declared a public health emergency for Puerto Rico in the wake of Hurricane Fiona, which caused major infrastructure damage and left much of the island without power. Now a Category 4 storm heading toward Bermuda, Fiona hit the Turks and Caicos Islands yesterday, causing storm surge water levels of 5 to 8 feet above normal. [more]

WATER | At the Clinton Global Initiative conference in New York yesterday, the Water & Climate Fund announced a $1 billion plan to ensure lasting access to water and sanitation for 100 million people in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. [more]

TAIWAN | Ma Xiaoguang, the Chinese government spokesperson on Taiwan, said yesterday that it is inevitable that the self-governing island will come under the control of China, but that the Chinese government is committed to achieving that goal peacefully. The statement came in the days following U.S. President Joe Biden saying in an interview that the U.S. would defend Taiwan in the event of a Chinese invasion. [more]

AUSTRALIA | Environmental officials on the Australian island state of Tasmania say about 230 whales, about half of which are thought to still be alive, have been stranded on Ocean Beach on the island's west coast. Rescue teams from the Marine Conservation Program are reported to be headed to the area. [more]

COVID-19 TRAVEL | The Associated Press cites an unnamed Canadian official as saying the Canadian COVID-19 vaccine requirement for people entering the country will likely be dropped by the end of September. Currently, unvaccinated travelers to Canada are subject to mandatory COVID tests and a 14-day quarantine on arrival. [more]

BASEBALL | Two home run milestones are within reach this week. First: New York Yankees' Aaron Judge hit his 60th home run of the season yesterday and is now within one of tying Roger Maris' 1961 American League record of 61 home runs. Second: St. Louis Cardinals' Albert Pujols is now at 698 career home runs, two short of achieving the 700 mark that has been reached by only three other players, Barry Bonds, Hank Aaron, and Babe Ruth. [more]

TODAY IN HISTORY | English writer J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit, a coming-of-age fantasy that became a classic, was published on this date in 1937. [more history]

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