August 21, 2023


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UKRAINE | Today is day 543 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Here are your updates:

  • Responding to plans by Denmark and the Netherlands to provide U.S.-made F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine, Russian officials say the move will lead to an escalation of the conflict in Ukraine, while Ukrainian officials say the jets will play a large role in helping to end Russia’s invasion. [more]
  • Ukrainian Interior Minister Ihor Klymenko said this weekend that at least seven people were killed, and more than 100 others were injured, in a Saturday morning Russian missile attack that struck a main square and surrounding buildings in the northern Ukrainian city of Chernihiv. [more]
  • Moscow region Governor Andrei Vorobyov said today that two people were injured near Moscow this morning by falling debris after Russian forces shot down a Ukrainian drone. [more]

TROPICAL STORM HILARY | Portions of California and Nevada have declared states of emergency as Tropical Storm Hillary impacts the southwest U.S. with heavy rains, high winds, flooding, and mudslides. Hilary is the first tropical storm since 1939 to hit Southern California. [more]

U.S. GUN VIOLENCE | Police in Seattle, Washington, say three people were killed, and six others were wounded, early Sunday when gunfire broke out at a hookah lounge in the city’s Mount Baker neighborhood. No information has yet been released about a possible suspect or suspects. [more]

HAWAII | U.S. President Joe Biden is scheduled to visit Maui today amidst the Hawaiian island’s ongoing efforts to begin recovering from the deadliest American wildfires in more than 100 years. Officials say the death toll on Maui has risen to 114 and that more than 1,000 people are still considered missing. [more]

U.S. POLITICS | Citing his record and high polling numbers, former U.S. President Donald Trump confirmed yesterday that he does not intend to take part in Wednesday’s first Republican presidential primary debate. Multiple other Republican presidential hopefuls have criticized Trump for not attending, saying he should appear to face questions on his multiple criminal indictments. [more]

HURRICANE SEASON | The U.S. National Hurricane Center says its scientists are monitoring three Atlantic weather systems that have the potential to affect the eastern United States. Tropical Storm Franklin is located in the eastern Caribbean and is expected to strengthen over the next few days. [more]

SAUDI ARABIA | In a report released today, humanitarian group Human Rights Watch says Saudi border guards killed hundreds of Ethiopian migrants and asylum seekers trying to cross the Yemen-Saudi Arabia border between March 2022 and June 2023. [full report] [more]

NORTH KOREA | As U.S. and South Korean forces begin their annual Ulchi Freedom Shield command and field exercises, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un observed the test launch of ship-based strategic cruise missiles, according to the state-run KCNA news agency, which did not specify the exact timing of the launches. [more]

CANADA | The Canadian province of British Colombia has declared a state of emergency and imposed a ban on non-essential travel due to fast-spreading wildfires that have prompted the evacuation of more than 35,000 people. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said yesterday that, at the province’s request, Canadian military troops will be available for support roles in British Colombia’s firefighting efforts. [more]

BRICS | A three-day summit of leaders from the BRICS economic bloc of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa begins tomorrow in Johannesburg, with the agenda expected to focus on strengthening cooperation to counter perceived Western dominance of global institutions. Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is the subject of an International Criminal Court arrest warrant over the invasion of Ukraine, will not attend the summit in person, but will appear via video link. [more]

GUATEMALA | With nearly 100% of votes counted, center-left anti-corruption candidate Bernardo Arévalo is reported to be the clear winner of yesterday’s presidential runoff election in Guatemala. [more]

ECUADOR | With no candidate having received enough support to be declared the winner of Ecuador’s presidential election yesterday, leading candidates Luisa González and Daniel Noboa will face each other in a runoff election in October. [more]

MOON MISSIONS | Russian space agency Roscosmos said yesterday that its unmanned Luna-25 spacecraft crashed into the moon Saturday, ending its mission to make the first-ever landing at the moon's south pole. India's Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft with the same mission is reported to still be on schedule for an August 23 landing. [more]

WOMEN’s WORLD CUP | With a 1-0 win over England, Spain claimed its first FIFA Women’s World Cup title yesterday. Twenty-three-year-old Olga Carmona, who scored the only goal in the game, was named the final’s most valuable player. [more]

GOLF | Viktor Hovland shot a final-round 9-under 61 yesterday to break the course record at Illinois' Olympia Fields Country Club and win the BMW Championship tournament. [more]

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE | "Blue Beetle" topped the North American box office over the weekend with an estimated $25.4 million in receipts, followed by "Barbie," and "Oppenheimer." [more]

TODAY IN HISTORY | On this date in 1959, Hawaii became the 50th U.S. state. Of the 50 U.S. states, Hawaii is the eighth smallest in land area and the 11th least populous; but with 1.4 million residents, it ranks 13th in population density. [more history]

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