March 27, 2024


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ISRAEL-HAMAS WAR | Updates from day 173 of the conflict:

  • Amidst ongoing negotiations and following Monday’s U.N. Security Council demand for a cease-fire, Hamas leaders said they would reject any cease-fire agreement that did not call for Israel to withdraw its forces from Gaza, while Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said his country would continue its operations to eliminate Hamas. [more]
  • Israel confirmed yesterday that an airstrike earlier this month killed Marwan Issa, the deputy leader of Hamas’ armed wing in Gaza, who is thought to have been one of the planners of the October 7 attacks on Israel. [more]
  • According to the Hamas-controlled Gaza health ministry, as of today, at least 32,490 Palestinians have been killed, and 74,889 have been injured, in Israel’s military operations in Gaza following the October 7 Hamas attacks on Israel. [more]

UKRAINE | Today is day 762 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Here are your updates:

  • In an interview yesterday, Ukraine’s Navy spokesman Dmytro Pletenchuk said that Ukrainian forces have sunk or disabled a third of all Russian warships in the Black Sea since the Russian invasion began. [more]
  • French Defense Minister Sebastien Lecornu said this week that France plans to deliver 78 Caesar howitzers to Ukraine in the near future and that France will increase its supply of artillery shells to meet Ukraine's urgent needs for ammunition. [more]

MARYLAND | At least six people, all members of road repair crews, are presumed dead following yesterday’s collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore after it was hit by a cargo ship that lost power. Reports say the Port of Baltimore will remain closed and both vehicle and maritime traffic will be disrupted in the area for the foreseeable future. [more]

U. S. CREDIT | Credit card giants Visa and Mastercard agreed to a thirty billion dollar settlement yesterday under which the companies will reduce swipe fees for their cards, cap processing rates for five years, and remove provisions in agreements that prevented merchants from directing customers toward cheaper means of payment. The settlement, which will require court approval, is intended to resolve most claims in a nationwide antitrust lawsuit filed by merchants that began in 2005. [more]

TEXAS | The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals yesterday kept on hold a Texas law that would allow state officials to arrest and detain people suspected of entering the country illegally. According to the ruling, the law will remain on hold while legal challenges to it play out. [more]

PENNSYLVANIA | Suburban Philadelphia’s Bucks County this week became the latest of dozens of local municipalities and U.S. states to sue the oil industry over its role in climate change and the industry’s alleged deception of the public of its impact on climate. In a statement announcing the lawsuit, Bucks County Commissioner Gene DiGirolamo said oil companies “have known since at least the 1950s that their ways of doing business were having calamitous effects on our planet, and rather than change what they were doing or raise the alarm, they lied to all of us.” [more]

TRUMP HUSH-MONEY TRIAL | New York Judge Juan M. Merchan yesterday issued a gag order barring former President Donald Trump from making or directing other people to make public statements on his behalf about witnesses, prosecutors, court staff, and jurors in Trump’s upcoming hush-money trial, which is scheduled to begin on April 15. [more]

AMAZON RAINFOREST | French President Emmanuel Macron and Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva announced a plan yesterday under which France and Brazil will jointly invest some $1.1 billion over the next four years to protect the Amazon rainforest both in Brazil and in neighboring French Guiana. [more]

HUNGARY | Reports say thousands of people took part in demonstrations yesterday in the Hungarian capital of Budapest to demand the resignation of Prime Minister Viktor Orban and the country’s chief prosecutor after the release of a recording purported to implicate a senior Orban aide in an attempt to interfere in a corruption legal case. [more]

INDIA AND MYANMAR | Reuters cites an unnamed source as saying that India plans to spend nearly $3.7 billion over the next 10 years to construct a fence along its 1,000-mile border with Myanmar to prevent smuggling and other illegal activities. [more]

TUNISIA | A Tunisian court today sentenced four men to death and two others to life in prison after they were convicted on charges associated with the murder of Chokri Belaid, whose 2013 assassination led to mass protests and contributed to the resignation of the country's then-prime minister.  [more]

THAILAND | Thailand’s lower house of Parliament today overwhelmingly approved a marriage equality bill that would legalize equal rights for marriage partners of any gender. If the bill, which would provide equal legal, financial, and medical rights for all couples, becomes law, Thailand would be the first country in Southeast Asia, and the third in Asia, after Taiwan and Nepal, to provide such protections. [more]

SOUTH AFRICA | A South African court yesterday rejected the ruling African National Congress party’s objection to the electoral registration of the opposition MK Party, which is named after the former military wing of the ANC and headed by former South African President Jacob Zuma. [more]

U.K. | In arguments before the British High Court yesterday, attorneys for the British Museum accused former museum curator Peter Higgs of stealing more than 1,800 items from the museum’s collections and offering them for sale online. [more]

TODAY IN HISTORY | On this date in 1915, American domestic Mary Mallon, better known as Typhoid Mary, was placed under a quarantine on North Brother Island, New York City, that lasted until her death in 1938. An asymptomatic carrier of the pathogenic bacterium Salmonella typhi, Mallon was allegedly responsible for multiple outbreaks of typhoid fever. [more history]

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