April 20, 2023


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UKRAINE | Today is day 420 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Here are your updates:

  • Denmark and the Netherlands jointly announced today that the two NATO member nations will provide Ukraine with at least 14 refurbished German-made Leopard 2 battle tanks in addition to their previous commitment to provide older Leopard 1 tanks to Kyiv. [more]
  • According to a statement yesterday from Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov, U.S.-made Patriot missile systems have arrived in Ukraine and are considered a major upgrade to Ukraine’s air defense capabilities against Russian missiles and warplanes. [more]
  • Reports say NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has arrived in Kyiv for his first visit to Ukraine since the Russian invasion began. [more]

U.S. GUN VIOLENCE | Police in Elgin, Texas, say two cheerleaders were shot in a parking lot in the city on Tuesday when one of the cheerleaders entered a car thinking it was her own. 25-year-old Pedro Tello Rodriguez Jr. has been arrested and charged with deadly conduct in connection with the case. [more]

MORE U.S. GUN VIOLENCE | Federal authorities and police in Gaston County, North Carolina, are reportedly searching for 24-year-old Robert Louis Singletary in connection with the shooting of four people, including a six-year-old girl. According to reports, the shooting occurred after a basketball rolled into Singletary’s yard from the street where several children were playing. [more]

ABORTION | The U.S. Supreme Court yesterday postponed its ruling on restrictions ordered by lower courts on the approval and distribution of the abortion drug mifepristone. The Court says a decision in the case is now expected by Friday. [more]

GUN LEGISLATION | The Washington state legislature yesterday passed a ban on the sale, distribution, manufacture, and importation of more than 50 semi-automatic rifle models, including AR-15s, AK-47s and similar style rifles in the state. The measure, which does not ban the possession of such weapons by people who already own them, is expected to be signed into law by Governor Jay Inslee. [more]

U.S. FEDERAL BUDGET | Ahead of a potential U.S. default on debt later this summer, U.S. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy yesterday unveiled Republicans' plan to raise the debt limit by $1.5 trillion through March 2024 and to cut government spending by $4.5 trillion. President Joe Biden has been seeking an increase in the debt limit without required spending cuts. [more]

ALABAMA | The Alabama Law Enforcement Agency says two teenagers and a 20-year-old man have been arrested and charged with reckless murder in connection with last weekend’s shooting at a birthday party in Dadeville, Alabama, in which four people were killed and 32 others were injured. [more]

OKLAHOMA | Authorities say at least two people were killed in Oklahoma’s McClain County yesterday when strong storms that sparked tornadoes, winds and hail moved through the area. An estimated 23,000 homes in the state were left without power due to the storms. [more]

MAINE | Authorities in Maine say Joseph Eaton, 34, has confessed to killing four people, including his parents, and then firing on motorists on a nearby highway earlier this week in the city of Bowdoin. Eaton was released from prison on April 14 after completing a sentence for aggravated assault. [more]

FLORIDA | The Florida State Board of Education voted yesterday to expand the state’s ban on teaching students about sexual orientation and gender identity to middle and high school teachers. The ban had previously applied only to teachers of students in kindergarten through third grade. [more]

DEA CONTRACTS | The Associated Press cites unnamed sources as saying the Justice Department’s Office of the Inspector General is investigating whether the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency improperly awarded millions of dollars' worth of no-bid contracts to DEA director Anne Milgram's past associates. [more]

VACCINATIONS | A new report from the United Nations children's agency says that lockdowns and health care disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic led to as many as 67 million children worldwide partially or fully missing routine vaccinations between 2019 and 2021. [full report] [more]

CLIMATE | A new international study published in the journal Earth System Science Data. concludes that melting of ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica from 2017 to 2020 was 20% greater per year than seen 10 years previously and more than seven times greater than annual shrinkage in the early 1990s. Study authors attribute the accelerated ice sheet loss to human-caused climate change. [full study] [more]

YEMEN | At least 78 people were killed, and more than 70 others injured, today in the Yemeni capital of Sanaa when a crowd at an aid distribution event stampeded after being panicked by gunfire and and electrical explosion. Officials say two event organizers have been detained in connection with investigations into the stampede. [more]

SUDAN | Following an earlier failed attempt, rival leaders of Sudan’s military and the country’s paramilitary Rapid Support Forces announced last night that a new 24-hour ceasefire had begun. Reports say an estimated 300 people have been killed in clashes between the two groups over the past five days. [more]

GERMANY | Reports say as many as 100,000 travelers will be affected by aviation security worker strikes taking place today and tomorrow at airports in the German cities of Dusseldorf, Hamburg, and Cologne Bonn. [more]

SPACE | The 400-foot-tall SpaceX Starship rocket is scheduled to launch from southern Texas on a test flight today. The craft’s originally scheduled launch earlier this weekend was postponed due to a valve malfunction. [more]

BASEBALL | Major League Baseball’s Oakland Athletics have reportedly signed a binding agreement to purchase land for a new ballpark in Las Vegas and will seek to move the franchise to the Nevada city by 2027. [more]

GOLF | Reports say Tiger Woods underwent surgery on his right ankle yesterday to address post-traumatic arthritis from a broken bone and that there is currently no timetable set for his return to competitive golf. [more]

TODAY IN HISTORY | On this date in 1919, in an ongoing dispute over the possession of the city of Vilnius, Polish forces drove out Russia's Red Army—which had previously ousted the newly established Lithuanian government—and occupied the city.  [more history]

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