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A curated weekday guide to major news and developments over the past 24 hours. Here’s today’s news.


Lt. Gen. Oleg Tsokov, a senior Russian general, has been killed in a missile strike on a hotel in Berdyansk on Ukraine’s occupied southern coast. A U.K.-supplied long-range Storm Shadow missile reportedly killed Tsokov. James Gregory reports for BBC News

Gen. Ivan Popov, a high-profile Russian general in command of forces involved in heavy fighting in the Zaporizhzhia region, said he was dismissed after accusing the defense minister of betraying Russian soldiers by not providing sufficient supportCNN reports. 

Gen. Sergei Surovikin, a former Russian commander who has not been seen in public since the paramilitary organization Wagner group armed action in June, is “resting,” said Andrei Kartapolov, chair of the defense committee and member of Moscow’s parliament. Unconfirmed reports say Surovikin, who is said to have a close relationship with Yevgeny Prigozhin, has been held for questioning about his alleged involvement in the armed action. BBC News Reports. 


President Biden concluded the NATO summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, yesterday by comparing the war in Ukraine with the Cold War struggle for freedom in Europe, framing the conflict as a long-term struggle. Biden added, “We will not waver” no matter how long the war continues. David E. Sanger and Zolan Kanno-Youngs report for the New York Times.

Russia’s foreign intelligence service chief, Sergei Naryshkin, said his call with CIA director William Burns focused on Ukraine, not the paramilitary organization Wagner group armed action, as Burns previously said. Yesterday, Russia’s state news agency, TASS, quoted Naryshkin as saying the armed action was only a pretext for the phone call. Analysts have said that Naryshkin’s account is part wishful thinking and partly aimed at raising uncertainty of Western unity in Kyiv and Western capitals. Ann M. Simmons and Warren P. Strobel report for the Wall Street Journal


Russia’s Defense Ministry yesterday said that the paramilitary organization Wagner group has handed over thousands of tons of weapons, ammunition, and military equipment to the Russian army. The move is in keeping with the reported deal between Yevgeny Prigozhin and Russian President Vladimir Putin. Francesca Ebel reports for the Washington Post


New evidence casts further doubt on the Greek coastguard’s version of events surrounding last month’s deadly migrant boat sinking, in which up to 600 people died. Two survivors described being pressured by the coastguard to identify nine Egyptians on board as traffickers. A new video, filmed by the coastguard, of the boat foundering at sea also challenges the Greek coastguard’s claim that the boat did not need rescuing. Nick Beake and Kostas Kallergis report for BBC News

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said yesterday that the final decision on Sweden’s NATO bid rested with the Turkish parliament and that Sweden needed to take more steps to win parliamentary support. Erdogan did not specify what Sweden needed to do to secure ratification. Erdogan said parliament would not take up the matter until October. Ben Hubbard and Gulsin Harman report for the New York Times

China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) are pushing ahead with talks on a third version of a free trade agreement, China’s top diplomat Wang Yi said today. The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) is the largest trade bloc backed by China that covers 15 Asia-Pacific economies, including Australia and Japan.

The RCEP is widely seen as an alternative to the U.S.-led Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership. Reuters reports. 


Ray Epps, a former U.S. Marine who became the focus of right-wing conspiracies surrounding the Jan. 6 attack, is suing Fox News for defamation. The legal action accuses Fox News of telling a “fantastical story” that frames Epps as a federal agent to make him a “scapegoat.” Mike Wendling reports for BBC News

The Justice Department yesterday appealed the sentences that eight convicted defendants linked to the Oath Keepers received for their roles in the Jan. 6 attack. While yesterday’s filings do not provide the reasoning for the appeals, several Oath Keepers’ sentences were far lower than what prosecutors had asked the court to impose. Katelyn Polantz and Hannah Rabinowitz report for CNN


House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and his conservative detractors are working to iron out an agreement to hold votes on several controversial amendments allowing the National Defense Authorization Act to proceed toward a final vote in the House. Yesterday, lawmakers voted 217-207 along party lines to move the bill to the floor and consider an initial batch of nearly 300 amendments. Any agreements McCarthy strikes with Republicans could alienate Democrats, who may prove vital if McCarthy is going to pass the legislation. Connor O’Brien, Jordain Carney, and Katherine Tully-Mcmanus report for POLITICO

House Judiciary Committee Republicans, in a hearing yesterday, criticized Christopher A. Wray, the FBI director, for his role in investigating former President Trump, his efforts to address extremist violence, and the FBI’s electronic surveillance practices. Committee Republicans treated Wray, a Trump appointee, as a hostile witness, endeavoring to frame him as a political tool of the Democrats. Adam Goldman and Glenn Thrush report for the New York Times

Gal Luft, a key witness in Republican’s investigations of the Biden family, faces a federal indictment over allegations related to his work for China. The indictment has cast a shadow over the investigations but has also given Republicans a new line of attack against the Justice Department. Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), among others, said he does “not trust the Department of Justice” and that the indictment could have been intended to hurt Luft’s credibility. James Fanelli and Lindsay Wise report for the Wall Street Journal

In a joint resolution yesterday, Democratic and Republican senators renewed an effort to block any U.S. president from leaving NATO without the Senate’s approval. The bill has been introduced repeatedly in recent years, including during the term of former President Trump, who expressed an interest in the United States leaving NATO. While the resolution has yet to pass the full Senate, it has strong bipartisan support. Patricia Zengerle reports for Reuters


Looming White House restrictions on U.S. investments in Chinese companies involved in quantum computing, artificial intelligence, and semiconductors could upset recent diplomatic efforts to ease tensions between the United States and China. The Treasury Department has sought to narrow the scope of the restrictions in a bid to assuage concerns within China that the measures amount to a technology blockade intended to damage the Chinese economy. Alan Rappeport and Ana Swanson report for the New York Times

Chinese cyberspies hacked the email account of Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, whose agency has imposed stiff export controls on Chinese technologies. Raimondo is the only known Cabinet-level official to have their account compromised in the targeted cyberespionage campaign. A senior FBI official said the government was not yet attributing the attack to any country or group but would seek to “impose costs” on the adversary. Ellen Nakashima, Joseph Menn, and Shane Harris report for the Washington Post

The perception that doing business in China has become riskier is obstructing the flow of capital into an economy already struggling with weak private investment and consumption and soaring youth unemployment. Chinese raids, investigations, and detentions on Western companies in China and an expanded anti-espionage law have fueled this perception. Foreign direct investment in China fell to $20 billion in the first quarter of this year, compared with $100 billion in last year’s first quarter. Lingling Wei reports for the Wall Street Journal

Secretary of State Antony Blinken will meet with top Chinese diplomat Wang Yi today, in the latest in a series of increased high-level interactions between Washington and Beijing. Despite these recent high-level talks, numerous issues between the U.S. and China remain, including frozen high-level military-to-military communication channels and the lack of tangible progress between the U.S. and China on tackling fentanyl flowing into the U.S. Jennifer Hansler and Kylie Atwood report for CNN