Wednesday, December 14, 2022
by Linda Noakes
Here’s what you need to know.
Biden signs the marriage equality act, Ukraine shoots down drones as Russia attacks Kyiv, and COVID rips through China’s medical staff
Today’s biggest stories
|Sam Bankman-Fried is escorted out of the Magistrate Court building after his arrest in Nassau, Bahamas, December 13, 2022. REUTERS/Dante Carrer|
A Bahamian judge denied FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried bail, hours after U.S. prosecutors accused the 30-year-old of misappropriating billions of dollars and violating campaign laws in what has been described as one of America’s biggest financial frauds. In an exclusive report, we reveal how a secret software change allowed FTX to use client money.
The Federal Reserve will conclude its last policy meeting of the year today on the back of a surprise drop in inflation, consensus around a slowed pace of interest rate increases, and markets primed for a coming halt in the monetary tightening.
British inflation fell more than expected in November after it hit a 41-year high in October, raising hopes that the price surge has peaked and offering some comfort to the Bank of England as it prepares to raise interest rates again.
Republican Senator Marco Rubio announced bipartisan legislation to ban China’s popular social media app TikTok, ratcheting up pressure on owner ByteDance amid U.S. fears the app could be used to spy on Americans and censor content.
China’s largest chip maker SMIC is ramping up production of a decade-old chip technology, key to many industries’ supply chains, setting off alarm bells in the United States and prompting some lawmakers to try to stop them.
Whoosh staged Russia’s only initial public offering of the year, though the e-scooter firm raised less than originally hoped in a market deprived of Western investors since Moscow sent troops into Ukraine in February.
|Musician Cyndi Lauper salutes the crowd as she performs at the signing ceremony for the ‘Respect for Marriage Act’ at the White House, December 13, 2022. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque|
President Joe Biden signed the Respect for Marriage Act into law at a jubilant celebration that featured singer Cyndi Lauper performing ‘True Colors’ in front of thousands of supporters on the White House lawn. The new law provides federal recognition to same-sex marriages, a measure born out of concern that the Supreme Court could reverse its legal support of such relationships.
Negotiators in Congress said they had reached agreement on funding the government through the end of its current fiscal year, as lawmakers scampered to meet a midnight Friday deadline when existing funds expire.
Many of the hundreds of migrants who crossed the Rio Grande from Ciudad Juarez into El Paso this week were part of a group kidnapped in Mexico as they made their way to the United States, according to migrants interviewed by Reuters.
A major winter storm pounded the heart of the United States, bringing heavy snow and freezing rain to the Northern Plains and spawning thunderstorms and destructive tornadoes in the South. The National Weather Service issued tornado warnings across parts of Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas.
U.S. scientists revealed a breakthrough on fusion energy that could one day help curb climate change if companies can scale up the technology to a commercial level in the coming decades. Researchers at the Lawrence Livermore National Lab in California for the first time briefly achieved a net energy gain in a fusion experiment using lasers.
|Aisha, who described her capture by Islamist militants, a forced abortion by the military, the loss of one child in a military bombing and what she suspects was the poisoning of another child by soldiers, poses for a portrait in an undisclosed location in Nigeria, October 9, 2022. REUTERS/Christophe Van der Perre|
Abducted and enslaved by Boko Haram. Coerced into an abortion by soldiers. Two children dead. As Nigeria battled insurgents, one woman was brutalized by both sides. Read the latest instalment of our investigation into a nightmare in Nigeria.
Ukrainian forces shot down 13 Russian drones over the capital Kyiv and two administrative buildings were damaged, officials said, as Washington considered sending its advanced Patriot air defense system to Ukraine. Read our special report on the supply chain that keeps technology flowing to Russia.
A growing number of China’s doctors and nurses are catching COVID and some have been asked to keep working, as people showing mostly moderate symptoms throng hospitals and clinics. Last week, in one fell swoop, China cut away most of the tenets governing its stifling zero-COVID policies, effectively ending its war on the pandemic.
U.S. Forces Korea launched a new space forces unit as the allies ramp up efforts to better counter North Korea’s evolving nuclear and missile threats. North Korea this year has tested intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of reaching the U.S. mainland.
As Peru careers from one political crisis to another, the country has exploded in protest, with at least seven dead in the last week and the smoke of fires and tear gas hanging over city streets. A way out seems distant.