REUTERS WORLD NEWS: Ukraine Independence Day, War 6 Mo. Old, Ethiopia Fighting in Tigray, More

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Reuters
The Reuters Daily Briefing

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

by Linda Noakes

Hello

Here’s what you need to know.

Weary but defiant Ukrainians mark Independence Day, fighting erupts along the border of Ethiopia’s Tigray region, and a win in New York signals the power of the abortion issue for Democrats

Today’s biggest stories

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and his wife Olena take flowers to the Memory Wall of Fallen Defenders of Ukraine in Kyiv, August 24, 2022

WORLD

Ukraine was “reborn” when Russia invaded six months ago, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said, marking 31 years of his country’s independence from the Soviet Union with a vow to drive Russian forces out completely. We look at how Russian President Vladimir Putin is betting that a winter gas chokehold will yield Ukraine peace – on his terms. Here’s what you need to know about the conflict right now.

Thailand’s Constitutional Court suspended Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha from official duties, after deciding to hear a petition seeking review of his legally mandated eight-year term limit. The petition was filed by the main opposition party, which argued that Prayuth’s time spent as head of a military junta after he staged a coup when he was army chief in 2014 should count towards his constitutionally stipulated eight-year term.

For the first time a South Korean general is commanding annual joint drills with American forces, the U.S. military said, a step toward Seoul’s long-delayed goal of gaining command of allied forces in the event of a war.

Fighting between forces from Ethiopia’s rebellious northern region of Tigray and central government forces has erupted around the town of Kobo, residents and the spokesman for the Tigrayan forces said, ending a months-long ceasefire.

Angolans voted in a tight race in which the main opposition coalition has its best-ever chance of victory, as millions of young people left out of its oil-fueled booms are expected to express frustration with nearly five decades of MPLA rule.

A woman wears an ‘I voted’ sticker at a polling center during the primary election in Hialeah, Florida, August 23, 2022

U.S.

A New York Democrat who campaigned on abortion rights and the future of U.S. democracy won a special congressional election in a swing district, a victory that Democrats hope could signal a fundamental shift in national voter sentiment ahead of the November midterm elections. Pat Ryan defeated Republican Marc Molinaro 51.3% to 48.7%, with 99% of the vote counted, Edison Research said.

Jerrold Nadler, a congressman of some 30 years, beat fellow longtime Democratic Representative Carolyn Maloney in a rare incumbent-vs-incumbent primary in New York, and Representative Val Demings won the Democratic nomination to run for Senate in Florida.

President Joe Biden’s public approval rating rose this week to its highest level since early June, following a series of legislative wins, according to a Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll.

A federal judge in Texas blocked the Biden administration from enforcing new guidance in the Republican-led state requiring hospitals to provide emergency abortions to women regardless of state bans on the procedure.

The U.S. National Archives discovered more than 700 pages of classified documents at Donald Trump’s Florida home in addition to material seized this month by FBI agents, according to a newly disclosed May letter the records agency sent to the former president’s attorney.

BUSINESS

This time last year, the world’s biggest central banks were united in getting the inflation story wrong. Now, as top policymakers gather for the Kansas City Federal Reserve’s annual monetary policy conference in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, the U.S. central bank looks like it might manage a ‘soft landing’ for its own economy, but the outlook for Europe is far more worrying.

Another dramatic spike in natural gas prices appears to have ended any hopes that Europe’s inflation battle is set to ease, with financial markets now bracing for higher prices, a faster pace of interest rate hikes and a deeper economic downturn.

Energy companies reaping record profits from soaring oil and gas prices have helped global dividend payments to shareholders soar above pre-pandemic levels and to a record quarterly high.

Japan will restart more idled nuclear plants and look at developing next-generation reactors, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said, setting the stage for a major policy shift on nuclear energy a decade after the Fukushima disaster.

A whistleblower’s complaint that Twitter misled federal regulators about the company’s security risks could provide Elon Musk with fresh ammunition in his bid to get out of buying the company for $44 billion.

India’s NDTV saw its shares jump 5% to a 14-year high after billionaire Gautam Adani’s conglomerate surprised the media group by saying it would buy a near-30% stake that could eventually lead to majority ownership. Adani is trying to catch up with rivals who wield influence over news, especially compatriot Mukesh Ambani’s $224 billion Reliance Industries, says Breakingviews columnist Una Galani.

SIX MONTHS OF WAR

As Ukraine marks a grim milestone, we look back at how the conflict unfolded

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