Signup to receive the Early Edition in your inbox here.

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


The BRICS — Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa — began their summit in South Africa today and are considering an expansion to balance against Western-led forums like the Group of Seven. However, internal disagreement could hamper these efforts. China and Russia are keen to grow and challenge U.S. power, while India is wary of a dominant China. David Pierson, Lynsey Chutel, Jack Nicas, Alex Travelli, and Paul Sonne report for the New York Times

ECOWAS yesterday rejected a proposal by Niger’s junta to hold elections within three years. ECOWAS reiterated its demand that the junta “Release [President] Bazoum without preconditions, restore constitutional order without further delay.” The diplomatic impasse could trigger military intervention. Reuters reports. 

Yevgeny Prigozhin, chief of the paramilitary organization Wagner group, published his first recruitment video yesterday since his failed armed action in June, claiming to be “making Russia even greater on all continents, and Africa even more free.” The video aims to recruit fighters to work in Africa and invites investors from Russia to put money into the Central African Republic. Emma Burrows reports for AP News


Japan’s decision to release over 1.3 million tons of ​treated cooling water following the disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant in 2011 could complicate its newly improved relations with South Korea. While the South Korean government supports the Japanese move to release the water, South Korean opposition has mounted heavy criticism. Issues concerning Japan often spark a severe response in South Korea, with some still viewing Japan as an enemy. Choe Sang-Hun reports for the New York Times

North Korea today warned that the trilateral summit between the United States, South Korea, and Japan raised the risk of “thermonuclear war.” The regime also denounced the annual Ulchi Freedom Shield summer military exercises between the United States and South Korea, which began yesterday. Soo-Hyang Choi reports for Reuters


An Israeli woman was killed and a man wounded in a suspected Palestinian attack on a car near Hebron in the occupied West Bank. The attack is the latest in a new spate of violence in the West Bank. The Palestinian health ministry said six Palestinians were shot and wounded by Israeli forces in the village of Beita. David Gritten reports for BBC News

Germany’s far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party is becoming more radical and more popular among German voters and is now the second-strongest political party in the country. While other right-wing parties in Europe are looking for centrist partners, the AfD has rejected this strategy as it prepares for next year’s E.U. elections. Loveday Morris and Kate Brady report for the Washington Post


An Iranian military delegation is in Russia to discuss cooperation between ground forces, Russia’s Defense Ministry is reported as sayingReuters reports. 

Russia plans to produce 6,000 military drones domestically by the summer of 2025 with Iran’s assistance. Despite staffing issues and sanctions, Russia has made significant progress in establishing the production facility to manufacture a variant of an Iran-made drone capable of flying over 1,000 miles. Researchers said that while Russia seeks “a drone developmental capability that exceeds Iran’s,” its facility is unlikely to meet its target date for the 6,000 drones. Dalton Bennett and Mary Ilyushina report for the Washington Post


Ukrainian civilians and private enterprises are developing drones for use on the front line. The large increase in this cottage industry is the result of years-long corruption and inefficiency in the state arms sector, as well as a growing concern that the U.S. elections could affect weapons procurement. Veronika Melkozerova reports for POLITICO

Two Ukrainian drones were shot down over the Bryansk region, Russia’s defense ministry said. Flights were temporarily stopped to and from Moscow’s airports earlier today. The ministry also said a Russian warplane had destroyed a Ukrainian reconnaissance boat in the Black Sea near a Russian gas production facility. Emily McGarvey reports for BBC News

A Russian long-range supersonic bomber has been destroyed in a military airfield in the Novgorod region following a Ukrainian drone strike. The attack indicates Ukraine’s ability to strike targets inside Russian territory. Graeme Baker reports for BBC News

Over 2,000 children, including orphans, have been transported from Russian-occupied areas to Belarus, where they were exposed to pro-Kremlin propaganda at a summer camp. It is unclear whether the parents consented to the transfer of their children to Belarus. However, the transfer of orphans across borders without the permission of their home country’s government is illegal under international law. Karolina Jeznach and Thomas Grove report for the Wall Street Journal

Ukraine has ordered the evacuation of the liberated city of Kupyansk as Russian forces attempt to retake the city and Ukrainian forces concentrate their counteroffensive to the south. Around 2,000 people who refuse to leave have signed releases stating they will not hold local authorities responsible for anything that follows the evacuation. Siobhán O’Grady, Heidi Levine, and Serhii Korolchuk reports for the Washington Post


The United States has urged its citizens to leave Belarus immediately. The State Department categorized Belarus as a Level 4 risk, the highest security warning. The warning comes amid heightened border tensions along Poland’s and Lithuania’s Belarus borders. Laura Kelly reports for The Hill


Former President Trump will surrender in Atlanta on Thursday in the case concerning his alleged attempt to overturn the 2020 elections in Georgia. Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee yesterday set Trump’s bond at $200,000 in a three-page court filing that also imposed restrictions on Trump’s public statements as a condition for his release. Trump took to Truth Social to say, “Can you believe it? … [Fani Willis] campaigned, and is continuing to campaign, and raise money on, this WITCH HUNT.” Jan Wolfe and Aruna Viswanatha report for the Wall Street Journal

Experts have said it will prove difficult to police the use of political rhetoric in former President Trump’s criminal cases. Even as judges have tried to impose restrictions on Trump’s public statements and keep the proceedings “completely divorced from politics, it can’t be. It’s steeped in politics,” said Kenneth White, a former federal prosecutor in California specializing in free-speech issues. Devlin Barrett, Spencer S. Hsu, and Isaac Arnsdorf report for the Washington Post

Federal prosecutors yesterday criticized former President Trump’s request to postpone his election interference trial in Washington until at least April 2026, saying the defense is overstating the time it would take to review the documents. The defense attorney pointed to the 11.5 million pages of discovery evidence to support their request. Prosecutors said Trump’s characterization of the evidence “overstates the amount of new and nonduplicative” material his lawyers will get and “exaggerates the challenge of reviewing it effectively.” Alan Feuer reports for the New York Times


The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of San Francisco yesterday filed for bankruptcy following over 500 lawsuits of child sexual abuse. “The unfortunate reality is that the archdiocese has neither the financial means nor the practical ability to litigate all of these abuse claims individually,” District of California Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone said. Victim advocates fear the decision is an attempt to deny justice and transparency to survivors. Paulina Villegas reports for the Washington Post

The House Freedom Caucus yesterday warned they would not support a short-term spending bill that funds the government at last year’s levels without major concessions that are unlikely to pass the Senate. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy could pass the short-term spending bill without the Freedom Caucus. However, doing so could have political ramifications later on. Lauren Fox and Melanie Zanona report for CNN

Female soldiers face significant sexism, harassment, and other gender-related challenges in the Army special operations units, according to a U.S. Army Special Operations Command report yesterday. The report surveyed over 5,000 people assigned to Army special operations forces units, including 837 female troops. “The vast majority” of the negative attitudes toward serving women serving “unfortunately did come from senior noncommissioned officers. So it does seem to indicate that it is generational,” Command Sgt. Maj. JoAnn Naumann said. Lolita C. Baldor reports for AP News

House Judiciary Committee Chair Jim Jordan (R-OH) and Ways and Means Committee Chair Jason Smith (R-MO) subpoenaed IRS and FBI officials yesterday regarding a 2022 meeting where the Justice Department’s investigation into Hunter Biden was purportedly discussed. The two Republicans believe four IRS and FBI officials were at or had direct knowledge of the meeting, at which, according to IRS whistleblower Gary Shapley, U.S. Attorney David Weiss said he did not have ultimate authority for bringing charges. Scott Wong and Rebecca Kaplan report for NBC News

Children’s deaths caused by firearms in the United States hit a record high in 2021 at 4,752, according to a study published yesterday in the journal Pediatrics.