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


Hundreds of people have stormed Sweden’s embassy in Iraq in protest of the second planned burning of the Quran in Sweden in under a month. Swedish officials confirmed that all embassy staff were safe. While Swedish police have denied permits for protests where the Quran was expected to be burned, the courts have ruled the protests should be permitted, citing free speech laws. BBC News reports. 

A shooting has left two people dead and six others injured in Auckland, New Zealand, just before the Women’s World Cup began. The shooter has been killed. Prime Minister Chris Hipkins said the attack was not being treated as terrorism, and no political or ideological motive for the attack had been identified. The tournament is going ahead as planned. Neil Johnston and Emily McGarvey report for BBC News


Yevgeny Prigozhin, chief of the paramilitary organization Wagner group, has said Wagner will, for now, not fight in Ukraine and repeated his criticism that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has failed, in what appeared to be the first video of him since the armed action. In the video, Prigozhin appears to be welcoming Wagner troops to Belarus. Mary Ilyushina reports for the Washington Post

Paramilitary organization Wagner group troops will help train Belarusian special forces during exercises at a military range near the border with Poland, the Belarusian defense ministry said todayReuters reports. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin is under pressure as “cracks” have formed in his power structure following the failed armed action last month, senior U.K. officials said this week. Richard Moore, head of MI6, said, “[Putin] really didn’t fight back against Prigozhin. He cut a deal to save his skin using the good offices of the leader of Belarus.” These comments come after what is seen as a successful NATO summit where the Group of Seven promised billions in long-term security assistance to Ukraine. Alexander Ward reports for POLITICO


Russian President Vladimir Putin will not attend the B.R.I.C.S. summit in South Africa next month. The development comes after South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said any attempt to arrest Putin would be a declaration of war against Russia. If Putin had left Russia, he would have been subject to an International Criminal Court (I.C.C.) arrest warrant. South Africa is an I.C.C. signatory. Nomsa Maseko and Kathryn Armstrong report for BBC News

The United States announced a $1.3 billion financial assistance package for Ukraine to purchase new military equipment and ammunition, the Pentagon said yesterday. The package follows several humanitarian and other aid packages, bringing this week’s total new U.S. commitment to Ukraine to $2.3 billion. John Ismay reports for the New York Times

As Moscow reimposed its blockade of ships carrying food from Ukraine, the Russian military struck the port city of Odesa, targeting Ukraine’s ability to export grain, officials said. These attacks risk sharply raising global wheat prices. In a statement yesterday, Russia’s defense ministry warned that “all vessels sailing in the waters of the Black Sea to Ukrainian ports will be regarded as potential carriers of military cargo.” Adding, “the countries of such vessels will be considered to be involved in the Ukrainian conflict on the side of the Kiev regime.” Meredith Lee Hill reports for POLITICO


John Kerry, President Biden’s climate envoy, yesterday ended lengthy negotiations in Beijing with no new climate agreements, with Chinese President Xi Jinping insisting that China would phase out carbon dioxide pollution on its own terms. While Kerry had “frank conversations,” he noted, “[i]t is clear that we are going to need a little more work.” Lisa Friedman, Chris Buckley, and Keith Bradsher report for the New York Times

Stopping Taiwan’s vice president and presidential frontrunner William Lai from visiting the United States next month is China’s “priority,” China’s ambassador in Washington, Xie Feng, said yesterday. Referring to Lai, Xie said provocative moves by Taiwan “separatists” should be contained. Taiwan’s defense ministry today said it had detected 22 Chinese warplanes around the island, some crossing the median line of the Taiwan Strait. Seven Chinese warships carried out “combat readiness patrols.” Reuters reports. 

North Korea has not responded to U.S. attempts to discuss Travis King, the U.S. soldier who dashed across the border from South Korea. Given the heightened tensions and inactive communication channels, King’s prospects for a rapid release are unclear. Hyung-Jin Kim reports for AP News


Federal prosecutors investigating former President Trump’s efforts to reverse the 2020 election have suggested they could charge Trump with violating a civil rights statute that dates back to the post-Civil War Reconstruction era. Section 241 of Title 18 of the U.S. Code makes it a crime to “conspire to injure, oppress, threaten, or intimidate any person” in the “free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured to him by the Constitution or laws of the United States.” The modern usage of Section 241 raised the possibility that Trump could face prosecution for trying to rig the election. Maggie Haberman, Adam Goldman, Charlie Savage, and Alan Feuer report for the New York Times

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger has complied with a subpoena from special counsel Jack Smith seeking Election Day video footage from State Farm Arena, a polling station that was the subject of election fraud claims by former President Trump. Last month, the Georgia State Election Board dismissed its yearslong investigation into election fraud allegations linked to the polling location. Charlie Gile and Zoë Richards report for NBC News

District Judge Alvin Hellerstein yesterday denied former President Trump’s bid to move his Manhattan prosecution to federal court, finding that Trump was not carrying out presidential duties when allegedly making hush money payments. Hellerstein said the evidence overwhelmingly indicated the matter related to a personal embarrassing event. “Hush money paid to an adult film star is not related to a President’s official acts,” he noted. Corinne Ramey reports for the Wall Street Journal

District judge Lewis Kaplan has dismissed former President Trump’s request for a new trial in a civil case in which a jury found him liable for sexually abusing and defaming columnist E Jean Carroll. Trump was ordered to pay $5m in damages, which he argued was excessive based on the jury’s verdict. Kaplan said the verdict was not a “miscarriage of justice.” Chelsea Bailey reports for BBC News


Two I.R.S. whistleblowers, Gary Shapley, and Joseph Ziegler, testified to Congress yesterday that the Justice Department delayed its investigation into Hunter Biden and ignored recommendations to file felony tax charges. Ziegler testified that prosecutors drafted a memo recommending both felony and misdemeanor tax charges against Hunter Biden, which, in an “abnormal” Department of Justice decision, was ultimately not adopted. Zachary Basu and Stef W. Kight report for Axios

The death of Anadith Danay Reyes Alvarez, an eight-year-old migrant girl in Customs and Border Patrol (C.B.P.) custody, has been called “a preventable tragedy” by Paul Wise, a pediatrician tasked with ensuring that the C.B.P. comply with providing essential services to migrants under their care. Wise accused the C.B.P. of systemic failures that ultimately led to the child’s death in his report that was part of a federal court filing. Nadine Yousif reports for BBC News