January 26, 2023


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UKRAINE | Today is day 336 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Here are your updates:

  • Commitments by the U.S., Germany, and other European allies to provide tanks to Ukraine are expected to allow the formation of at least two Ukrainian tank battalions comprising some 88 U.S. Abrams and German Leopard 2 tanks. [more]
  • Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said today that the Western supply of modern battle tanks to Ukraine constitutes "direct involvement" in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. [more]
  • Reports say Russian accelerated its missile attacks across Ukraine today following the announcement of Western supply of modern battle tanks to Ukraine, with some 55 air- and sea-based missiles having been fired. [more]

U.S. ECONOMY | The Commerce Department is scheduled to release its first estimate of fourth-quarter 2022 gross domestic product growth at 8:30 ET today. Economists surveyed by data firm FactSet estimate that U.S. GDP grew at a 2.3% annual rate in the October to December period. [more]

ALASKA | The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced yesterday that it is reinstating road-building and logging restrictions in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest — the country’s largest national forest. [more]

IMMIGRATION | The U.S. Department of Homeland Security says the number of migrants from Cuba, Haiti, Nicaragua, and Venezuela taken into custody along the U.S.-Mexico border dropped dramatically this month -- as much as 97%, compared to December -- following the implementation of new border restrictions and establishment of new immigration application alternatives. [DHS statement] [more]

HOUSING | Amidst soaring rental rates nationwide, the White House released a “Blueprint for a Renters Bill of Rights” yesterday that offers tenants and landlords a set of recommendations "intended to support the development of policies and practices that promote fairness for Americans living in rental housing. [White House release] [more]

LOUISIANA | The U.S. Department of Justice said yesterday that the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections routinely violates the Fourteenth Amendment rights of prisoners by keeping them in custody beyond their scheduled release dates. Justice Department officials say more than 26% of prisoners released between January and April 2022 were released after the end of their sentence, with many held for an extra 90 days or more. [Justice Department statement] [more]

GLOBAL ECONOMY | The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs predicted yesterday that global economic growth this year will fall to 1.9% — down from an estimated 3% in 2022 — due to high inflation, climate crises, the continuing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, and food and energy crises associated with the war in Ukraine. [more]

WEST BANK AND ISRAEL | Palestinian officials say Israeli forces killed at least nine Palestinians when gunfire broke out during an overnight arrest raid in the Jenin refugee camp in the occupied West Bank last night. [more]

SPAIN | Officials with Spain's National Police say a man suspected of attacking a priest and several other people at two Catholic churches in Algeciras yesterday has been arrested and that the attacks are being investigated as possible acts of terrorism. [more]

GERMANY | German authorities said today that a second person has been arrested on charges of treason associated with a 2022 spying incident in which an employee of the country’s foreign intelligence service was alleged to have passed classified information to Russia. [more]

JAPAN | Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida announced today that Japan successfully deployed a new intelligence-gathering satellite this morning to help monitor North Korean military and missile-launch sites and to aid in natural disaster response. [more]

FRANCE AND BURKINA FASO | The French Foreign Ministry said today that France will withdraw its estimated 200-400 special forces troops from Burkina Faso over the next month after the West African nation said yesterday that it had decided to end a military accord that allowed French troops to fight insurgents on its territory. [more]

MYANMAR | A new report from the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime says that opium poppy cultivation in military-ruled Myanmar increased 33% last year, reversing a six-year downward trend of such cultivation in the Southeast Asian nation. [full report] [more]

SOCIAL MEDIA | Facebook, in announcing yesterday that it will allow former President Donald Trump back on its platform after a two-year suspension prompted by the January 6 attacks on the U.S Capitol, said, "The public should be able to hear what their politicians are saying — the good, the bad and the ugly — so that they can make informed choices at the ballot box." [more]

TECH LAYOFFS | Business software firm SAP announced today that it plans to cut up to 3,000 jobs, or 2.5% of its workforce, amidst sharp declines in profits, and that it is exploring a possible sale of its stake in the software company Qualtrics. [more]

ENTERTAINMENT | Canadian-American pop star Justin Bieber has reportedly sold the rights to his early career music to U.K.-based music investment firm Hipgnosis. Billboard Magazine reports that the sale was worth an estimated $200 million. [more]

NFL | Finalists for this season’s AP Most Valuable Player and other end-of-season awards were announced by the National Football League yesterday. The MVP finalists are: Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts, Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow, Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson, and Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen. [full list of end-of-year award finalists] [more]

TODAY IN HISTORY | On this date in 1788, Arthur Phillip, who had sailed into what is now Sydney Cove with a shipload of convicts, hoisted the British flag and established the first permanent European settlement on the continent of Australia. [more history]

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