Signup to receive the Early Edition in your inbox here.
A curated weekday guide to major news and developments over the weekend. Here’s today’s news.
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on Friday set an undisclosed “D-Day” for military intervention to restore democracy in Niger if diplomatic efforts fail. However, ECOWAS Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security Abdel-Fatau Musah said a peaceful resolution remained the bloc’s preferred option. Maxwell Akalaare Adombila reports for Reuters.
Border guards in Saudia Arabia killed hundreds of migrants at the Yemeni border, according to a report by Human Rights Watch.
The U.A.E.’s growing economic ties with Russia are disturbing the United States, the U.A.E.’s closest security partner. Russian investments, gold, and oil are becoming critical to the U.A.E. economy, as it capitalizes on the economic opportunities the invasion of Ukraine brought. While the United States has not often done so, it could decide to impose ‘secondary sanctions’, limiting the emirates’ ability to do business with the United States or in the dollar. Benoit Faucon and Rory Jones report for the Wall Street Journal.
China today publicly accused a government employee of spying for the CIA, marking the second high-profile espionage case this month. The CIA allegedly recruited the employee in the unnamed government department during his studies in Japan. The Chinese Ministry of State Security said in a statement.
The U.K. has warned citizens of a possible terrorist attack in Denmark following Quran burnings. “Terrorists are likely to try to carry out attacks in Denmark. Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places frequented by foreigners,” the British foreign ministry warned. Denmark has successfully disrupted several planned attacks and made some arrests. Reuters reports.
Six people were killed and 144 wounded after a Russian missile struck a theatre in the northern Ukrainian city of Chernihiv on Saturday morning. The U.N. condemned the attack as “heinous,” and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy vowed to respond to the “terrorist attack.” James Waterhouse and George Wright report for BBC News.
A Ukrainian drone was shot down by Russian air defenses in Moscow on Friday, with debris falling near the Expocentre fairgrounds, Russia’s Defense Ministry said. Friday’s attack disrupted air traffic in Moscow. Anastasiia Malenko reports for the Wall Street Journal.
Nearly 500,000 Ukrainian and Russian troops have been killed or wounded since the full-scale invasion of Ukraine began, U.S. officials said. Russia’s casualties are nearing 300,000, including up to 120,000 deaths. Close to 70,000 are believed to have been killed on the Ukrainian side. Helene Cooper, Thomas Gibbons-Neff, Eric Schmitt, and Julian E. Barnes report for the New York Times.
U.S. cluster munitions are proving effective and have helped Ukraine “significantly increase Russian losses in equipment and in lives,” said Mykhailo Podolyak, a top adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. “The main benefit is that the enemy is now very scared to go on assault,” soldiers have reported. Many U.S. allies opposed the shipment of cluster munitions to Ukraine, and Human Rights Watch called Biden’s decision “profoundly troubling.” John Hudson and Anastacia Galouchka report for the Washington Post.
Ukraine’s forces are repelling Russian attacks and made modest advances on the eastern front over the past week, a deputy defense minister said today. Ukrainian forces are bracing for attacks in Kupiansk, a town in the Kharkiv region, while Ukrainian forces are advancing south of Bakhmut. Reuters reports.
The trilateral summit between the United States, Japan, and South Korea last week led to an agreement that requires them to hold annual talks, expand joint military exercises, and establish a three-way hotline for crisis communications. In a joint statement, they also criticized China’s “dangerous and aggressive behavior” in the South China Sea and reaffirmed the “importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait.” The summit drew heavy criticism from China. The “summit is possibly a starting shot for a new cold war,” Lu Chao, an expert on Korean Peninsula issues with the Liaoning Academy of Social Sciences, told a Communist Party newspaper on Friday. David Pierson and Olivia Wang report for the New York Times.
Russian and Chinese intelligence agencies are targeting U.S. space companies in a bid to steal critical technology and prepare cyberattacks to degrade U.S. satellite capabilities, according to a warning by National Counterintelligence and Security Center, the F.B.I., and the Air Force.
The United States, Japan, and Australia are planning joint navy exercises in the South China Sea near the western Philippines this week, Filipino security officials said yesterday. While the Philippines will not participate in these exercises due to military logistical limitations, it is open to becoming a participant in the future, officials said. While planned months ago, the drills follow a tense stand-off between China and the Philippines in the region earlier this month. POLITICO reports.
DOMESTIC DEVELOPMENTS – JAN. 6 ATTACK.
Christopher Worrell, a Proud Boys member convicted on seven charges related to the Jan. 6 attack, went missing before his scheduled sentencing on Friday. The FBI released a wanted poster for Worrell, who “violated conditions of release pending sentencing.” Federal prosecutors were seeking a 14-year sentence for Worrell. Mary Kay Mallonee reports for CNN.
Sentences for some convicted Jan. 6 attackers may need to be invalidated following a ruling issued on Friday by a federal appeals court in Washington that petty offenders should not receive a sentence of prison followed by probation. “Probation and imprisonment are alternative sentences that cannot generally be combined,” the appeals court wrote. Katelyn Polantz and Tierney Sneed s for CNN.
OTHER DOMESTIC DEVELOPMENTS
Former President Trump will likely push for the Georgia charges against him to be heard in federal court, following a similar attempt by co-defendant and former chief of staff Mark Meadows. The tactic could delay the proceeding and, if successful, give Trump a more sympathetic jury. As Meadows did, Trump is expected to argue that his actions outlined in the indictment related to his professional duties should be tried in a federal forum. Jan Wolfe and Byron Tau reports for the Wall Street Journal.
Military judge Col. Lanny J. Acosta Jr., handling the USS Cole bombing case, threw out confessions given by Saudi defendant Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri because the judge regarded them the product of torture. “Exclusion of such evidence is not without societal costs,” Acosta Jr. wrote in a 50-page decision. “However, permitting the admission of evidence obtained by or derived from torture by the same government that seeks to prosecute and execute the accused may have even greater societal costs.” Carol Rosenberg reports for the New York Times.
The FBI has joined an investigation into the “threats of violence” against Fulton County officials, including members of the Atlanta-area grand jury that voted to indict former President Trump and his allies. It is unclear whether anyone has acted on these threats, and no specific targets have been identified. Security has been increased for Fulton County district attorney Fani Willis, as she has received repeated threatening phone calls following Trump’s accusations that she seeks to interfere with his 2024 presidential campaign. Holly Bailey and Hannah Allam report for the Washington Post.
Over 60,000 migrants were taken into custody after crossing the border illegally in July, nearly doubling the figures from June. According to U.S. Customs and Border Protection figures released Friday, it is the highest monthly number of parents and children crossing since the end of 2022. Officials stressed that the total number of apprehensions in July was well below the same month in 2022 when almost 182,000 migrants were taken into custody. Maria Sacchetti reports for the Washington Post.
Kenneth Chesebro, one of the legal architects of the fake elector scheme to overturn the 2020 election results, was in the crowd outside the Capitol on Jan. 6 and closely followed the conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and other ‘stop the steal’ organizers. Chesebro did not appear to have illegally entered the Capitol. Alan Feuer and Maggie Haberman report for the New York Times.