March 15, 2023


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UKRAINE | Today is day 384 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Here are your updates:

  • U.S. officials say a Russian fighter jet struck the propeller of a surveillance drone flying in international airspace over the Black Sea yesterday, forcing the drone to be crashed into the water. Russian authorities claim the drone intruded into an area declared off-limits as part of its military operations in Ukraine, while U.S. statements say the Russian interference was a “brazen violation of international law.” [more]
  • Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said yesterday that his country could be ready to provide Ukraine with its Soviet-made MiG-29 fighter jets within the next four to six weeks. [more]

U.S. ECONOMY | Government data released yesterday shows that consumer prices in the U.S. rose 0.4% in February — down from a 0.5% increase in January. Compared to the year-ago period, consumer prices were 6% higher in February, down from a year-over-year increase of 6.4% in January. [more]

ABORTION | A federal judge in Texas is scheduled to hear arguments today in a lawsuit brought by anti-abortion activists that seeks to overturn the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s more than two-decade-old approval of the abortion drug mifepristone. [more]

U.S. GUN CONTROL | President Joe Biden issued an executive order yesterday ordering federal agencies to ensure compliance with existing gun control laws and procedures, including rules for federally licensed gun dealers, background checks, reporting of ballistics data, and firearm marketing. [more]

WINTER WEATHER | Portions of New England, upstate New York, northeastern Pennsylvania and northern New Jersey are experiencing power outages, school closures, and dangerous driving conditions today as a late-winter storm has dropped as much as 31 inches of snow in affected areas over the past day. [more]

U.S. BANKING | Analytics firm Moody's Investors Service said yesterday that it has downgraded its rating of the U.S. banking system as a whole from stable to negative. The firm notes that while the U.S. banking system has enough liquidity to sustain itself, the system may be subject to more stringent controls and regulations as a result of three recent bank failures, including California’s Silicon Valley Bank. [more]

MEDICARE | U.S. regulators have announced the first round of penalties imposed on drug companies for increasing drug prices faster than inflation for people with disabilities or those age 65 and older on the government's Medicare health program. Twenty-seven drugs from various manufacturers will be subject to the penalties, which were authorized as part of the Inflation Reduction Act. [more]

SAN FRANCISCO | A city-appointed reparations committee in San Francisco, California, has provided more than 100 recommendations to the city for providing reparations to Black residents for centuries of slavery and systemic racism. Among the recommendations to be considered by city officials are payments of $5 million to every eligible Black adult, personal debt and tax relief, and guaranteed annual incomes. [more]

ARKANSAS | The Arkansas state legislature approved legislation yesterday that allows the creation of a privately-funded state capital memorial marking the number of abortions performed in the state prior to the striking down of the Roe v. Wade abortion-rights decision. [more]

CALIFORNIA | Some 27,000 residents of central California were put under evacuation orders yesterday as risks of landslides and flooding from recent heavy rains continue to affect the region. [more]

FRANCE | A new round of protests and strikes by opponents of the French government’s plan to increase the country’s retirement age is taking place across France today. Among the sectors expected to be significantly affected by today’s labor actions are air and train travel, schools, shipping, and sanitation. [more]

PAKISTAN | Clashes between police and supporters of former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan are continuing to take place outside Khan's home in Lahore today. Police arrived at the home to arrest Khan yesterday for failing to appear in court. [more]

GERMANY | Reports say German police arrested five people yesterday in a raid against a group suspected of illegally smuggling migrants — mostly from Iran and Turkey — into Germany. [more]

U.K. | British Finance Minister Jeremy Hunt announced today that the government program providing caps on U.K. household energy costs will be extended by three months to the end of June. [more]

ARGENTINA | The Argentine national statistics agency reported yesterday that the South American country’s year-over-year inflation rate hit 102.5% in February — its first triple-digit yearly inflation rate since 1991. [more]

TECH MANUFACTURING | The South Korean Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy announced plans yesterday to pursue some $422 billion in corporate investment projects through 2026 to promote in-country development in six key technology industries: semiconductors, rechargeable batteries, electric vehicles, robotics, displays, and biotechnology. [more]

TECH LAYOFFS | Facebook parent company Meta announced yesterday that it will cut about 10,000 jobs in the coming months and that it will not fill some 5,000 current job openings at the company. Meta's previous round of job cuts, announced in November, eliminated some 11,000 positions. [more]

WORLD CUP | World soccer governing body FIFA announced yesterday that it will expand the size of the 2026 World Cup. Under the expansion, 48 teams will play a total of 104 games in the United States, Canada, and Mexico for the summer 2026 event. [more]

IDITAROD | Ryan Redington, grandson of one of the founders of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, won the 2023 Iditarod yesterday, becoming only the sixth Alaska Native to win the race since its founding in 1973. [more]

TODAY IN HISTORY | On this date in 1917, during the first phase of the Russian Revolution, Tsar Nicholas II was forced to abdicate, thus ending the rule of the Romanov dynasty. [more history]

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