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


Israel conducted an aerial attack on Iran overnight, U.S. officials say. Iranian state media said explosions were heard around the central city of Isfahan early this morning and that three drones were destroyed after the country’s air defense systems were activated. An army general in Isfahan province said no damage has been reported. Isfahan is home to a large airbase, a major missile production complex, and multiple nuclear facilities. The International Atomic Energy Agency has said no nuclear sites were damaged. The Pentagon and the Israeli military have both declined to comment at the time of writing. BBC News reports. 

Iran played down the reported Israeli attacks and today said there were no plans to respond. Iranian media and officials have referred to the incident as an attack by “infiltrators,” rather than by Israel. “The foreign source of the incident has not been confirmed. We have not received any external attack, and the discussion leans more towards infiltration than attack,” an Iranian official said. The limited scale of the attack and Iran’s muted response appear calculated to avert an all-out war. Parisa Hafezi and James Mackenzie reports for Reuters.

The United States was given advance notification yesterday of Israel’s intended strike in the coming days but did not support the response, a senior U.S. official said. Reports of the strike came hours after Iran’s foreign minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian told CNN that if Israel takes further military action against Iran, its response would be “immediate and at a maximum level.” He added that this warning had been communicated to the White House through the Swiss embassy in Tehran. Alex Marquardt, Helen Regan, Hamdi Alkhshali, Artemis Moshtaghian, and Adam Pourahmadi report for CNN.

A senior Iranian official yesterday warned that Iran could work on building nuclear weapons if Israel attacks its nuclear facilities. The commander for security of Iran’s nuclear facilities said Iran could switch its stance on nuclear policies, a reference to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s longstanding public pledge not to build nuclear weapons. “If the counterfeit Zionist regime would want to use the threat of attacking our country’s nuclear sites as a tool to put Iran under pressure, revision of the Islamic Republic’s nuclear doctrine and polices as well as a departure from the previously announced reservations is conceivable and probable,” he said. Laurence Norman and Aresu Eqbali report for the Wall Street Journal

International reactions to Israel’s suspected overnight strike on Iran are pouring in. Oman condemned the attack as well as “the repeated Israeli military attacks in the region.” Canada’s foreign minister Mélanie Joly said in a post on X, “We are monitoring the situation closely. We will address the situation with the foreign ministers at the G7 session this morning in Italy.” China said it “opposes any actions that further escalate tensions,” and Italy’s foreign minister Antonio Tajani called today for an “absolute de-escalation.” Tajani added that a “diplomatic effort” from E.U. and G7 members is underway to quell tensions in the region, and that their morning agenda had been changed today to “address the Iran issue and put priority attention on the Middle East.” 

The U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem is restricting government employees and their family members from traveling outside the greater Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and Be’er Sheva areas until further notice, the embassy said in an alert today. The move was made “out of an abundance of caution following reports that Israel conducted a retaliatory strike inside Iran.” 

The Biden administration yesterday imposed new sanctions on Iran’s drone, steel, and auto industries, the Treasury Department announced. The sanctions were coordinated with the United Kingdom, which is also targeting Iran’s drone program, as well as its ballistic missile program. 


The commissioner general of the U.N. agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA) told the U.N. Security Council yesterday that UNRWA staff detained by Israeli security forces had “shared harrowing accounts of mistreatment and torture in detention.” Philippe Lazzarini demanded an independent investigation and “accountability for the blatant disregard for the protected status of humanitarian workers, operations, and facilities under international law.” He also said that calls for the agency’s closure are “not about adherence to humanitarian principles,” and instead “are about ending the refugee status of millions of Palestinians.” The Guardian reports. 


The United States yesterday vetoed the U.N. Security Council vote on granting Palestine full member status at the United Nations. The vote was 12 in favor of the resolution, with Washington opposing and abstentions from Britain and Switzerland. U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Linda Thomas-Greenfield today said that the new resolution would not have brought a two-state solution closer, adding, “The resolution provides for the Palestinian Authority to be a member of the U.N. Right now, the Palestinians don’t have control over a significant portion of what is supposed to be their state. It’s being controlled by a terrorist organization.” Israel’s foreign minister Israel Katz said after the vote, “The shameful proposal was rejected. Terrorsim will not be rewarded.” Yonette Joseph reports for the New York Times.

The Biden administration is making a fresh push to establish Saudi-Israeli ties. According to U.S. and Saudi officials, Washington is pushing for a diplomatic deal in the coming months that presses Israel to accept a new commitment to Palestinian statehood in exchange for diplomatic recognition by Riyadh. As an incentive to recognize Israel, the White House is offering Riyadh a more formal defense relationship, assistance in acquiring civil nuclear power, and a renewed effort to push for a Palestinian state. U.S. officials say they are in the final stages of negotiating and that the successful multicountry effort to shoot down Iranian missiles and drones on Saturday should make clear to Israel that its security against threats from Tehran could be bolstered by closer relations with Saudi Arabia. Michael R. Gordon, Summer Said, and Gordon Lubold report for the Wall Street Journal

C.I.A. director Williams Burns has blamed Hamas for stalling ceasefire talks. Burns said yesterday that negotiations for a ceasefire and another round of hostage releases have stalled because Hamas rejected the latest proposal by Israel, Qatar, and Egypt, placing blame for the lack of progress squarely on the group. “Right now, it’s that negative reaction that really is standing in the way of innocent civilians in Gaza getting humanitarian relief that they so desperately need,” Burns said. A senior Hamas official earlier said there were not enough living civilian hostages left who met Israel’s criteria to reach the proposed figure of 40 hostages over six weeks. Julian E. Barnes and Aaron Boxerman report for the New York Times.

The United States and Israel held a high-level virtual meeting yesterday about a possible Israeli operation in Rafah. It is the second such meeting in recent weeks. According to U.S. officials, the Biden administration remains concerned that an offensive in Rafah would lead to significant civilian losses. A White House reading of the meeting said both sides discussed Iran’s attack and new sanctions announced by President Biden yesterday, before moving on to “the shared objective to see Hamas defeated in Rafah.” “Participants will meet again soon,” it adds. Barak Ravid reports for Axios.

U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin yesterday spoke with Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant to discuss Iran’s actions, other regional threats, and humanitarian aid in Gaza. Austin discussed “the importance of increasing and sustaining” the flow of humanitarian aid to civilians in Gaza, including via a new route from Ashdod Port in Israel, the Pentagon said in a statement. Kanishka Singh reports for Reuters.

New York City police arrested at least 108 people yesterday during a pro-Palestinian protest on Columbia University’s campus after the university’s president requested their removal, per Mayor Eric Adams. The confrontation comes after Columbia’s president and other university leaders testified in Congress yesterday over the campus climate and antisemitism in the backdrop of the Gaza war. April Rubin reports for Axios.


Two Russian strikes in Ukraine’s central Dnipropetrovsk region killed nine people, officials say. In a separate strike, Ukraine said that it downed a long-range bomber in Russian territory for the first time. In the regional capital of Dnpro, two people were killed and 20 wounded when a five-story building was hit. Paul Kirby reports for BBC News.


A Polish man has been charged over claims he assisted an alleged Russian plot to assassinate Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, according to authorities in Poland and Ukraine. He has been charged with “readiness to act for foreign intelligence against the Republic of Poland,” an offense carrying up to eight years in prison if found guilty. Daria Tarasova-Markina, Antonia Mortensen, Christian Stern, Anna Chernova and Mariya Knight report for CNN.

Two men have been arrested in Poland over an attack in March on a senior aide to the late Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny. Lithuanian intelligence said the attack was likely “Russian-organized.” At a press conference today, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda confirmed the arrests, thanking Polish authorities. Cat McGowan reports for BBC News.

Polls opened today for the world’s biggest election, with the first and largest phase of India’s general election getting underway. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is seeking to win a rare third consecutive term. Around 969 million people are eligible to vote in what is considered among the most consequential elections in decades. Polling will take place in seven phases over the next six weeks. Helen Regan and Rhea Mogul report for CNN.

The leaders of Belgium and the Czech Republic are warning their European counterparts to take urgent action to prevent Russian interference in June’s Europe-wide elections. “We simply cannot allow Russia to get away with such a blatant attack on our democratic institutions and principles,” Belgium’s prime minister Alexander De Croo and his Czech counterpart Peter Fiala said in a letter, as E.U. leaders held a summit in Brussels yesterday. It follows both countries’ intelligence services uncovering evidence of attempts to bribe E.U. lawmakers, and De Croo saying last week that Belgium had uncovered the existence of a network trying to undermine support for Ukraine in its war against Russia. Lorne Cook reports for AP News.

Five Japanese nationals in Pakistan escaped unhurt today from a suicide bomb attack on their vehicle as police shot down a gunman accompanying the bomber. A police spokesperson said two bystanders were among the three people injured. No militant group has claimed responsibility for the attack at the time of writing. Reuters reports. 


Former President Trump’s hush money trial is continuing today after a full 12-person jury was sworn in yesterday in one of the most high-profile criminal cases in U.S. history. One alternate juror has been seated and five more must be selected today. Join Just Security Journalism Fellow Adam Klasfeld’s Daily Dispatches from the Trump Trial Courtroom in New York for updates from inside the courtroom.