World

Your Monday Briefing: Reports of Russian Atrocities

Good morning. We’re protecting reviews of Russian atrocities, a effervescent political disaster in Pakistan and a Taliban ban on rising poppies for opium.

Resistance: Right here’s how Kyiv has withstood Russian assaults and the way already legendary fighters repelled Russians from the small garrison metropolis of Vasylkiv.

Background: Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, has repeatedly tried — and failed — to subjugate Ukraine.

Ripple results: The warfare has pushed up the price of meals in East Africa, which is going through what could possibly be its worst drought in 4 a long time.

State of the Warfare:

Different developments:


The transfer — a defiant bid by Khan to stay in energy, regardless of shedding the backing of the navy — threatens to plunge the nation right into a constitutional disaster. On Saturday, Khan mentioned he wouldn’t settle for the results of the vote, dismissing it as a part of an American conspiracy towards him.

Opposition leaders accused Khan of excessive treason and requested the nation’s Supreme Court docket to intervene, calling it “unprecedented” and a “blatant violation” of Pakistan’s Structure. A listening to was scheduled for Monday.

Evaluation: The maneuver risked destabilizing the delicate democracy in Pakistan, a nuclear-armed nation that helps the Taliban. Since Pakistan grew to become an unbiased nation in 1947, not one in every of its prime ministers has accomplished a full time period.

Profile: Khan, a former cricket star, was elected in 2018 on a nationalist promise to combat corruption and distance Pakistan from the U.S., with which it has had a troubled historical past. If Khan is ousted, many consultants say that Pakistan may develop nearer to the U.S. and the West.


The insurgents turned rulers of Afghanistan outlawed the cultivation of opium flowers on Sunday. The decree additionally banned the use, sale, switch, buy, import and export of wine in addition to heroin and different medicine.

The transfer may have far-reaching penalties for the numerous farmers who turned to the illicit crop amid the nation’s brutal drought and financial disaster.

Many farmers had planted the crop — which might be saved for a while after harvesting — as an funding. They anticipated dwindling provide and rising costs, although they knew the Taliban may transfer to limit cultivation. The Taliban’s announcement on Sunday got here in the course of the poppy harvest.

Context: Afghanistan accounts for about 80 % of the world’s provide of opium.

Background: Within the Nineteen Nineties, the Taliban made a number of halfhearted makes an attempt to limit opium earlier than enacting a ban on the cultivation of opium poppies shortly earlier than the U.S. invaded Afghanistan in 2001, after which the Taliban turned to the crop to gas their warfare machine for twenty years.

The Thai authorities is mounting a marketing campaign to get the world to name Thailand’s capital Krung Thep Maha Nakhon (Bangkok). Thai residents would like that their leaders deal with fixing the nation’s battered financial system.

So long as there was marine life, there was marine snow — a ceaseless drizzle of dying and waste sinking from the floor of the ocean into its depths.

Now, tiny bits of plastic have infiltrated the slow-descending flakes, that are the deep sea’s principal meals supply and a pipeline that carries the ocean’s carbon to the seafloor. The microplastics, usually buoyant, sink with the flakes.

That’s new info: Scientists had initially assumed that plastic principally floated on the floor. However a current mannequin discovered that 99.8 % of the plastic that entered the ocean after 1950 sank beneath the primary few hundred ft. Scientists have discovered 10,000 instances extra microplastics on the seafloor than in contaminated floor waters.

They’re simply starting to grasp the implications. As a result of microplastics add to the floor space of marine snow, the combination may carry extra carbon to the seafloor and alter our planet’s historic cooling course of.

Sinking microplastics might also injury deep-sea meals webs. “The plastics are a weight-reduction plan capsule for these animals,” a carbon cycle scientist instructed The Occasions.

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