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A curated weekday guide to major news and developments over the past 24 hours. Here’s today’s news.
Russia carried out missile and drone strikes on southern and eastern Ukraine last night, causing damage to infrastructure in the Black Sea port of Odesa, Ukrainian officials said. Ukraine’s air force said all six missiles, and 31 out of 36 drones, were shot down. Olga Voitovych and Duarte Mendonca report for CNN.
The Black Sea grain deal, allowing Ukraine to export grain safely, has officially expired after Russia pulled out of the agreement. Russia’s decision to pull out has been condemned by world leaders, who say it will affect some of the planet’s poorest people. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said he believed that President Vladimir Putin “wants to continue the agreement” and that they would discuss the renewal of the deal when they meet next month. Antoinette Radford and Kathryn Armstrong report for BBC News.
Russia repulsed a Ukrainian drone attack on Crimea this morning, the Russian defense ministry said. The attempted strike comes a day after an attack on a Crimean bridge. Reuters reports.
The U.N.’s World Meteorological Organization yesterday said it is monitoring potential new temperature records from “intense heatwaves” sweeping several continents. Affected regions include the southern United States, the Mediterranean, North Africa, the Middle East, and some countries in Asia, including China. The World Meteorological Organization reports.
The E.U. pledged more investment for Latin America and the Caribbean yesterday to recalibrate its international relationships following Russia’s war on Ukraine and the growing wariness of China. While the E.U. is the biggest foreign investor in Latin America and the Caribbean, China has become its biggest trading partner. “Europe aspires to be the partner of choice for Latin America and the Caribbean,” European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said. Philip Blenkinsop and Andrew Gray report for Reuters.
Japan and France will hold their first joint fighter jet training exercises from Jul. 26-29. The drills, scheduled to take place in Japan, are aimed at deepening bilateral defense cooperation to realize a “free and open Indo-Pacific,” the Japanese Air Self-Defense Force said in a statement today.
U.S. RELATIONS – CHINA
The annual growth rate in China’s economy fell to just over 3 percent in spring, well below the government’s target, official data released yesterday revealed. This downturn may explain Chinese officials’ recent openness to diplomatic engagement with strategic rivals like the United States. However, this thaw remained limited to economic or business policies that did not involve China’s national security. Keith Bradsher reports for the New York Times.
The United States and China could use climate cooperation to redefine their uneasy relationship and become leaders in tackling global warming, the Biden administration’s climate envoy John Kerry told senior Chinese officials today. However, significant areas of disagreement between the United States and China remain, including climate financing, China’s use of coal, and the reduction of methane. Valerie Volcovici reports for Reuters.
U.S. RELATIONS – MIDDLE EAST
President Biden yesterday invited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to a meeting in the United States. The meeting is likely to take place before the end of the year. The invitation may signal a thaw in the U.S.-Israel relationship after months of tension arising from Israel’s planned judicial overhaul and construction of settlements in the West Bank. Amy B Wang reports for the Washington Post.
F-35 jet fighters and a Navy destroyer are being deployed to the Middle East by the United States to boost its forces after a string of challenges by Iranian and Russian forces in the region, U.S. officials said yesterday. The deployment comes after Iran attempted to seize two oil tankers earlier this month. In the same period, Russian aircraft confronted U.S. drones as they flew over Western Syria. Michael R. Gordon reports for the Wall Street Journal.
A Russian fighter jet on Sunday flew dangerously close to a U.S. surveillance aircraft over Syria putting the lives of the four crew members in danger, U.S. officials said yesterday. This incident marks an escalation in recent encounters between U.S. assets and Russian fighter jets over Syria. The U.S. is considering several military options to address the increasing Russian aggression, an official said, giving no further details. Tara Copp and Lolita C. Baldor report for AP News.
DOMESTIC DEVELOPMENTS – U.S. MILITARY INFORMATION
Millions of U.S. military emails were mistakenly sent to Mali because of a minor typing error. For years, emails intended for the military’s “.mil” domain have been sent to Mali, which uses the “.ml” suffix. Some of the emails reportedly included sensitive information. The Pentagon said it had taken steps to address the issue. Bernd Debusmann Jr reports for BBC News.
Jack Teixeira, the Air National Guardsman charged with leaking classified intelligence, says he should be given the same pretrial privileges as former President Trump, another defendant facing charges of mishandling sensitive documents. Teixeira is awaiting trial in jail after a federal judge in Massachusetts said he posed a flight and national-security risk if released. Meanwhile, prosecutors did not seek to detain Trump and requested few restrictions on his release. Some legal experts have warned that defendants would cite Trump’s treatment in their own cases. Sadie Gurman reports for the Wall Street Journal.
DOMESTIC DEVELOPMENTS – TRUMP LEGAL MATTERS
The Georgia Supreme Court yesterday rejected a motion by former President Trump’s lawyers to effectively end the criminal investigation into efforts to overturn his 2020 election defeat in Georgia. Trump’s motion came weeks before Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis is expected to announce criminal charges. Jan Wolfe and Cameron McWhirter report for the Wall Street Journal.
OTHER DOMESTIC DEVELOPMENTS
Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken said Republican senators’ tactic of delaying three dozen State Department nominees to leverage on unrelated issues was “undermining national security.” Several held-up appointees are would-be ambassadors to countries where the United States has critical interests, including the U.A.E., Ethiopia, and Jordan, as well as the State Department coordinator for counterterrorism. Michael Crowley reports for the New York Times.
Former President Trump and his allies are planning a sweeping expansion of presidential power if he is re-elected in 2024. These changes include bringing independent agencies under direct presidential control, refusing to spend money Congress has appropriated for programs a president does not like, and stripping employment protections from tens of thousands of civil servants, making it easier to replace them. Jonathan Swan, Charlie Savage, and Maggie Haberman report for the New York Times.
Congressional Democrats are calling on the Department of Homeland Security to detail “actions you have taken to weed out extremists within your ranks.” The lawmakers cited a Project on Government Oversight report, which found that members of far-right groups have ties to the department. Rebecca Beitsch reports for The Hill.
Conditions at Winn Correctional Center, an ICE detention facility for migrants in Louisiana, have not been improved despite promises by immigration officials and years of complaints about inadequate medical care, filthy accommodation, and mistreatment, advocates and asylum-seekers said. As of last the week, more than 1,110 people were detained in the facility, up 53% from September, according to data from Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Daniella Silva reports for NBC News.