August 17, 2023


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UKRAINE | Today is day 539 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Here are your updates:

  • Speaking in Norway today, NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said that Russia underestimates the alliance’s dedication to supporting Ukraine and that NATO will support Ukraine “until it wins the war” against the Russian invasion. [more]
  • Russian defense officials say four Ukrainian drones were shot down overnight — three southwest of Moscow and one over Crimea. [more]

HAWAII | Government officials in Hawaii have indicated that they are working to implement a moratorium on land and real estate transactions in the areas of Maui affected by recent wildfires, citing concerns over possible land grabs. Also, the death toll from the fires rose to 110 as of Wednesday, and authorities say the Maui wildfires are about 85% contained. [more]

9/11 | According to an Associated Press report, the Pentagon and FBI have told some families of victims of the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other defendants still held at the U.S. detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, may not face the death penalty under plea agreements being considered as a means of ending the suspects’ ongoing prosecution. [more]

CALIFORNIA | A group of inmates at a San Francisco-area women's prison filed a lawsuit this week against the federal Bureau of Prisons, saying the sexual abuse of prisoners at the Dublin facility has not stopped despite the related successful prosecution of the prison's former warden and several former officers. [more]

ABORTION | A three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans yesterday rejected a lower court ruling that would have overturned the FDA’s decades-old approval of the abortion-inducing drug mifepristone, but said portions of the ruling, including those ending availability of the drug via mail and limiting its use through only the seventh week of pregnancy, could remain in place. The U.S. Supreme Court has previously ordered that the drug should remain available while court cases surrounding its approval proceed. [more]

INDIA | Emergency operations officials in India’s Himachal Pradesh state say at least 72 people in the state have been killed this week in landslides and flash floods brought on by heavy monsoon rains. [more]

NIGER | Military leaders from the 15-nation West African regional bloc ECOWAS are meeting today in Ghana to discuss the ongoing military coup in Niger and the possibility of military intervention to restore the government of deposed President Mohamed Bazoum to power. The meeting follows last week’s announcement of the establishment of an ECOWAS “standby force” for possible use in Niger. [more]

MIGRATION | Officials on the Atlantic island nation of Cabo Verde say dozens of migrants from Senegal are missing and feared dead after a fishing boat that had been carrying about 100 migrants to Spain was rescued some 385 miles off the coast of West Africa with only 38 people on board. [more]

PAKISTAN | Officials in Pakistan’s eastern Faisalabad district say 129 Muslim residents were arrested overnight in connection with the burning of churches and homes of minority Christians yesterday that followed an alleged desecration of the Koran. [more]

NICARAGUA | Administrators at Nicaragua’s Jesuit-run University of Central America say the country’s government has confiscated the institution after accusing it of being a “center of terrorism.” Reports say at least 26 Nicaraguan universities have been seized by the government of President Daniel Ortega since 2021. [more]

SWEDEN | Swedish media report that the government plans to raise the country’s terrorism alert level to its second-highest stage, indicating a concrete threat of a terrorist attack, amidst ongoing concern over Muslim anger following recent burnings and other acts against the Koran. [more]

SPAIN | Reports say authorities on the Spanish island of Tenerife have ordered the evacuation of some 3,800 people as firefighters work to contain a two-day-old wildfire that has burned more than 6,400 acres. [more]

SOCCER | Vlatko Andonovski, coach of the U.S. women’s national soccer team, which had its earliest-ever tournament exit at this month’s Women’s World Cup, is expected to announce his resignation today. [more]

TODAY IN HISTORY | On this date in 1945, Sukarno declared Indonesia's independence from the Netherlands. After the Dutch transferred sovereignty four years later, he served as Indonesia's first president.  [more history]

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