August 24, 2023


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UKRAINE | Today is day 546 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Here are your updates:

  • Norwegian broadcaster TV2 reports today that Norway will join the Netherlands and Denmark in donating U.S-made F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine for its fight against the Russian invasion. [more]
  • Without specifying details, Ukrainian intelligence officials said today that a special operations mission was carried out in Russia-annexed Crimea overnight, achieving all mission goals and inflicting casualties on Russian forces. [more]

U.S. GUN VIOLENCE | Authorities in Orange County, California, say four people, including a gunman, were killed, and another five people were wounded, yesterday evening in a shooting incident at a biker bar in rural Trabuco Canyon. Reports say the gunman, who was killed by police responding to the incident, was a retired police officer. [more]

ABORTION | South Carolina's newly all-male Supreme Court voted 4-1 yesterday to uphold a state law that bans almost all abortions in the state once a fetal heartbeat can be detected, which is open to interpretation, but considered to be at about six weeks following conception. The ruling reverses the Court’s own ruling in January that struck down the ban, and follows the mandatory age-related retirement of Justice Kaye Hearn, who had been the Court’s only female justice. [more]

TRUMP GEORGIA ELECTION TRIAL | Former President Donald Trump is expected to surrender this evening for pre-trial booking at Georgia’s Fulton County jail in connection with his trial on charges of conspiring to overturn the results of the 2020 election in the state. Attorneys for Trump and prosecutors have agreed to a $200,000 bond for the former president, along with conditions that include barring Trump from intimidating co-defendants, witnesses, or victims in the case — including on social media. [more]

U.S. POLITICS | Among the topics addressed by the eight participants in last night’s first Republican presidential primary debate were: Ukraine funding, abortion, climate change, the economy, former President Donald Trump, President Joe Biden, education, the Jan. 6, 2021, attacks on the U.S. Capitol, and border security. [more]

INDIA | Joining the U.S., the former Soviet Union, and China as the only countries to have ever conducted successful moon landings, India landed its Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft on the moon yesterday. The landing was the first ever at the moon’s south pole. [more]

ASIA-PACIFIC | According to a report released by the Asia Development Bank today, lingering effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and increased costs-of-living sparked by surging inflation have pushed an extra 67.8 million people in the Asia-Pacific region into extreme poverty. [press release] [full report] [more]

JAPAN AND CHINA | Chinese customs authorities today announced a ban on all Japanese “aquatic products,” including seafood, as Japan began releasing treated and diluted radioactive wastewater from the wrecked Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant into the Pacific Ocean. [more]

TAIWAN | Taiwan announced today that it plans to spend $2.97 billion on new weapons, including fighter jets, next year to strengthen its defenses against China. The spending is part of Taiwan’s previously announced $19.1 billion overall defense budget for 2024. [more]

BRICS | South African President Cyril Ramaphosa announced today that Iran, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Argentina, Egypt, and Ethiopia will join the BRICS economic coalition of emerging markets, which currently consists of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. The announcement was made at the BRICS summit being held in Johannesburg. [more]

RUSSIA | Wagner mercenary group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin and six of his group’s top leaders are believed to have died yesterday when their plane crashed shortly after taking off from Moscow. The crash is widely seen as an assassination prompted by the short-lived coup against Russian military leaders that Prigozhin staged two months ago. [more]

MORE RUSSIA | According to Russian state-run news agency TASS, a Moscow court yesterday extended the pre-trial detention of Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich on espionage charges through November 30. The U.S. government, the Wall Street Journal, and Gershkovich, who was arrested in Russia in late March, have all denied the charges against him. [more]

PAKISTAN | Emergency operations officials in Pakistan say widespread flooding has forced the evacuation of more than 100,000 people in the country’s eastern Punjab province over the past three weeks. [more]

NORTH KOREA | A second North Korean attempt to launch a spy satellite failed today, according to the country’s National Aerospace Development Administration, which says a third attempt will be made in October. [more]

TODAY IN HISTORY | On this date in 1949, following the signing of its establishment treaty four months earlier, NATO -- the North Atlantic Treaty Organization -- entered into force. [more history]

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