Your Wednesday Briefing - The New York Times

The EU steps up its response to Ukraine One day after the European Union agreed to punish Russia with an oil embargo European leaders a...

One day after the European Union agreed to punish Russia with an oil embargoEuropean leaders announced a 9 billion euro aid package for Ukraine and moved to tackle a blockade of Ukrainian cultures which threatens a global food crisis.

The agreement to ban most Russian oil imports by the end of the year exempt Hungarywhose leader, Viktor Orban, maintains friendly ties with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

As European leaders wrapped up a two-day summit in Brussels, Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, said the developing global food crisis was “only the fault of Russia”, which seized or blocked the entire Ukrainian Black Sea. ports, preventing the departure of 22 million tonnes of grain.

The Russian Foreign Minister will visit turkey next week to possibly discuss the release of the grain.

On the ground: Fighting raged in Sievierodonetsk on Tuesday as Russian troops advance towards the center of the citywhich is the last in the Lugansk region of eastern Ukraine to remain outside Russian control.

The military: A new Russian commander, General Aleksandr Dvornikov, was sent to Ukraine in April to oversee a refocused invasion in the east. US officials say it is repeat the same mistakes in the new campaign that forced Russia to abandon its push to take the whole country.

Finance: European officials are urging the United States to seize more $300 billion in Russian central bank assets and give this money to Ukraine. But that could be illegal, US officials warn, and could discourage other countries from relying on the United States as an investment haven.

In late March, Malian soldiers in pursuit of Islamist militants arrived in the village of Moura and executed hundreds of men. But the soldiers were not alone. They were accompanied by members of the shadowy Russian paramilitary group known as Wagneraccording to diplomats, officials and human rights groups.

In Moura, Malian soldiers and their Russian allies looted homes, held villagers captive in a dry riverbed and executed between 300 and 400 people, mostly civilians, according to witnesses and analysts. Malian authorities hailed Moura’s attack as a major victory in their fight against extremist groups, claiming to have killed 203 fighters, but making no mention of civilian casualties.

The death toll in Moura is the highest in a growing list of human rights abuses committed by the Malian army, which diplomats and human rights monitors say have increased since the army began conduct joint operations with the Wagner Group in January.

The context: Since the appearance of the Wagner Group in Ukraine in 2014, its agents have been identified working in Libya, Syria and countries in sub-Saharan Africa. The group also mines diamonds, spreads disinformation and supports autocrats in an effort to increase Russia’s footprint.

Ministers from the governments of Israel and the United Arab Emirates yesterday signed a free trade agreement which, once ratified, would be the broadest agreement of its kind between Israel and an Arab country.

The speed with which the deal took shape – it was sealed less than two years after formal ties were established between Israel and the Emirates – highlights the willingness with which Israel is now being accepted by some Arab leaders after years diplomatic isolation.

The agreement will lead to the elimination of customs duties on 96% of goods traded between the two countries within five years. Bilateral trade was worth $885 million in 2021, Israel’s economy ministry said. The free trade agreement could see the annual value of trade reach $10 billion within five years, the UAE’s economy ministry said.

Background: For decades, Israel has been ostracized by all but two Arab countries amid an unresolved Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But in 2020, Israel established or improved its relations with Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Morocco and Sudan, reflecting a shift in these countries’ priorities away from a Palestinian state and towards building a united front against Iran.

Whatever your connection (or lack thereof) to baseball, you might find something to like in Savannah Bananas. This Georgia State collegiate summer league team has garnered a huge following by leaning into entertainment – including dancing on the pitch. They also wear stilts, surf the crowd and sing karaoke.

The Banana method works. While major league games can sometimes draw fewer than 3,000 fans, the Bananas have sold out every home game at their 4,000-seat stadium since the team’s inception in 2016.

Cuba’s amateur boxing program is the best in the world: fighters have won 15 Olympic medals since 2012, compared to nine for the United States during that time.

Today, 60 years after the island nation banned professional sports, Cuban boxers enter the combat hunt. In May, Cuba’s communist government approved a decision allowing boxers to fight professionally.

This decision widens the possibilities of competition. But money matters too. The national team’s base salary is just 3,500 Cuban pesos a month, the equivalent of $1 a day, while each Olympic gold medal earns a fighter the equivalent of $300 a day. month to life.

Under a deal with Golden Ring, a Mexican promotions company, boxers will keep 80% of net pay from each fight. The rest will be divided between the coaches, the medical staff and the national federation.

Athletes interviewed by The Times seemed happy with the new arrangement, saying they hoped the deal would stem a wave of defections that has risen in their sport in recent years.

This ham and jam sandwich is an extension of the Parisian sandwich known as a ham and butter: jam for the sweetness, ham for the salt and Dijon mustard for a bit of heat.

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Newsrust - US Top News: Your Wednesday Briefing - The New York Times
Your Wednesday Briefing - The New York Times
Newsrust - US Top News
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