REUTERS WORLD NEWS: Republicans Win the House, Dems Hold Senate, Russian Missiles Hit Ukraine, COP27 Latest, More

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Reuters

The Reuters Daily Briefing

Thursday, November 17, 2022

by Linda Noakes

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The Black Sea grain deal is extended, Elon Musk says he will find a new leader for Twitter, and gamers lament the end of ‘World of Warcraft’ in China

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Today’s biggest stories

House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy speaks to reporters at the Capitol in Washington, November 15, 2022. REUTERS/Michael A. McCoy

U.S.

Republicans were projected to win a majority in the U.S. House of Representatives, setting the stage for two years of divided government as the Democrats held control of the Senate.

Karen Bass, a Democratic congresswoman, was projected to beat Rick Caruso in the race for Los Angeles mayor, becoming the first woman to lead the nation’s second-largest city.

Donald Trump’s decision to jump into the 2024 race could help give Joe Biden a second term in the White House, the president and his aides believe, viewing his Republican predecessor as a vulnerable and defeated politician even as they fret about the impact a bitter campaign could have on America.

Former Vice President Mike Pence said he would not testify before the House of Representatives panel probing the January 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol because Congress “has no right to my testimony.” A member of the far-right Oath Keepers told a jury that she got “swept up” in the moment when she stormed the Capitol, comparing it to the same feeling shoppers get on Black Friday.

The Senate voted to advance a bill protecting federal recognition of same-sex marriage, prompted by concerns that a more conservative Supreme Court could reverse a 2015 decision that made it legal nationwide.

Ukrainian service members inspect a crater at a site of a residential area damaged by a Russian missile strike in Lviv, November 16, 2022. REUTERS/Roman Baluk 

WORLD

Russia launched more missile strikes on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure and its forces pressed attacks in the eastern Donetsk region, reinforced by troops pulled from Kherson city in the south which Kyiv recaptured last week. On a brighter note, Ukraine said agreement had been reached on extending by 120 days a deal that allows for the export of food and fertilizers from Black Sea ports via a protected corridor.

The U.N. climate agency published a first draft of a hoped-for final agreement from the COP27 climate summit, repeating many of last year’s goals while leaving contentious issues still to be resolved. The 20-page document is labeled a ‘non-paper’, indicating it is far from a final version and there are still hours if not days left in the negotiations between delegates from nearly 200 countries.

President Xi Jinping, conspicuously absent from the main stage of diplomacy during China’s COVID isolation, has been mostly smiles and handshakes on his return this week with a flurry of meetings that Beijing hopes will begin to mend frayed relations. We look at how he has put personal diplomacy back in play.

North Korea fired a ballistic missile as it warned of “fiercer military responses” to U.S. efforts to boost its security presence in the region with its allies, saying Washington is taking a “gamble it will regret”.

Myanmar’s military rulers have granted amnesty to almost 6,000 prisoners to mark a national holiday, state media reported. Sean Turnell, an Australian economist and former adviser to democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi, was among those to be released.

British Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt leaves his home in London, November 17, 2022. REUTERS/Toby Melville

BUSINESS

Finance minister Jeremy Hunt will bury Britain’s failed ‘Trussonomics’ experiment today by cutting spending and raising taxes, moves that he and Prime Minister Rishi Sunak say are needed to restore investor confidence. As inflation rockets and recession looms, many British businesses are struggling to secure affordable bank finance.

Split control of the U.S. Congress following the midterm elections may provide a tailwind for stocks at the end of a bruising year, but inflation and the Federal Reserve are likely to remain the market’s main drivers, investors said.

Elon Musk said he expected to reduce his time at Twitter and eventually find a new leader to run the social media company, adding that he hoped to complete an organizational restructuring this week. Meanwhile Musk said in court that he made some Tesla decisions without the approval of the company’s directors, as he defended his $56 billion pay package against claims that he dictated its terms to a compliant board.

The founder of collapsed crypto exchange FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried, said he regretted his decision to file for bankruptcy and, in an interview published by Vox, criticized regulators. Bankman-Fried said later on Twitter that the basis of the interview, an exchange of messages on the same platform, was not supposed to be public.

Blizzard Entertainment and NetEase caused dismay among thousands of gamers by saying hits such as ‘World of Warcraft’ will not be available in China from next year as a 14-year partnership ended.

SoftBank sold a 4.5% stake in Indian digital payments giant Paytm through block deals for $200 million, sources told Reuters, leading to a sharp fall in the shares of the Indian company.

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