Today's Headlines and Commentary

Today’s Headlines and Commentary

By Benjamin Pollard
Monday, June 27, 2022, 4:34 PM

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The G7 countries said they plan to stand united behind Ukraine “for as long as it takes,” as Ukrainian forces fight the Russian invasion of the country, writes Reuters. The commitment came following an address from Ukrainian President Vlodymyr Zelenskyy, in which he asked G7 leaders for additional weapons and aid. The G7 leaders also pledged to grant an additional $29.5 billion for Ukraine to assist in the war effort.

President Biden and other G7 leaders announced that they plan to ban Russian gold imports to further financially hobble the country’s economy amid its invasion of Ukraine, reports the Washington Post. Additional economic sanctions may come in the form of an agreement on a price cap on Russian gas, which is reportedly moving toward consensus.. A new global infrastructure investment program was also announced at the summit. The initiative—which has a goal of gathering $600 billion in public and private investments—is intended to check the influence of the Chinese Belt and Road Initiative.

10 people were killed and 40 were wounded in a Russian missile attack on a shopping center in the Ukrainian city of Kremenchuk, according to Reuters. More than 1,000 people were in the shopping center when the missiles hit, according to President Zelenskyy. Rescue workers will continue searching the site for additional bodies over the next two days, said Dmytro Lunin, governor of the central Poltava region.

Russia defaulted on its international debt for the first time in over a century when it failed to meet a bond payment deadline on Sunday, reports the New York Times. Russia failed to send approximately $100 million to foreign investors within the established 30-day grace period. A formal declaration of default has not yet been issued. The Russian government is rejecting claims of default, saying that it made the payments in May, but they were blocked from reaching bondholders. 

Brittney Griner’s trial in Russia will start on Friday, writes AP News. The WNBA star and Olympic gold medalist’s trial on cannabis possession charges was scheduled by a court near Moscow nearly four and a half months after her arrest. Griner’s detention was extended an additional six months during a closed-door preliminary hearing on drug transport charges that carry up to 10 years.

23 migrants died in a stampede during an attempted mass crossing into a Spanish enclave in North Africa, reports the New York Times. Human rights organizations are calling for an investigation into the deaths, saying that security forces used indiscriminate force at the crossing into Melillia, Spain. Around 2,000 migrants approached the border fences at the enclave with some attempting to enter after cutting through a fence and others trying to scale the fence. At least 130 people reportedly successfully crossed into the enclave.

ICYMI: This Weekend on Lawfare

Ben Connable argued that the Russian military’s prioritization of dramatic public displays over exercises that simulate combat have left forces unprepared for their invasion of Ukraine.

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