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EU Leaders In Kyiv, Israeli Gas Deal, Tesla Warning

A teenager in Borodyanka, Ukraine swings in front of destroyed homes. Ukraine has been defending itself against such destruction since the Russian invasion on Feb. 24.

McKenna Johnson, Joel Silvestri, Lisa Berdet and Lila Paulou

👋 Ello-hay!*

Welcome to Thursday, where France’s Macron, Germany’s Scholz and Italy’s Draghi all arrive in Kyiv, the EU secures a deal to wean itself off Russian gas, there’s sign of LGBTQ+ progress in Thailand and data warns about Tesla driver-assisted cars crashing. Meanwhile, for Ukraine media Livy Bereg, Oleksandr Detsyk analyzes the tricky art of hitting Russia with the right sanctions so as not to trigger a global economic crisis.

[*Pig Latin]

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🌎  7 THINGS TO KNOW RIGHT NOW

• Macron, Scholz and Draghi arrive in Ukraine: French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi arrived in Kyiv to show Europe’s support for Ukraine. The leaders of the EU's three largest economies visited the ruins of the Russian assault in a nearby suburb, and are in meetings with President Volodymyr Zelensky and other Ukrainian officials.

• EU seals gas deal with Israel and Egypt: The European Union has signed a tripartite natural gas export deal with Israel and Egypt in a bid to reduce dependence on Russia for energy. Israeli gas will be exported to Europe through Egypt.

• Violent protests in India over new military hiring scheme: Violent protests have erupted in the northern Indian state of Bihar following the unveiling of a new recruitment scheme for the armed forces. The plan aims at cutting expenditure on salaries and pensions but would limit job recruitment and opportunities for potential recruits.

• Ronald Reagan's shooter John Hinckley released after 41 years: John Hinckley, who attempted to assassinate U.S. President Ronald Reagan in 1981, was fully released after 41 years. Hinckley had been found not not guilty by reason of insanity for the shooting, which seriously injured Reagan and three others.

• Suspect admits killing missing pair in Brazil: A suspect identified as Amarildo da Costa de Oliveira has confessed to the murders of journalist Dom Phillips and researcher Bruno Pereira, who have been missing since June 5 in the Amazon. Brazilian authorities said human remains were dug up where the suspect said the pair had been killed. Their identities are being confirmed.

• Australia signs new carbon emissions target: Australia’s new Labor Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has pledged to cut carbon emissions by 43% from 2005 levels by 2030, up 15% from the previous conservative government’s targets. This move is very significant for Australia, one of the world's highest per capita carbon emitters.

• Thailand moves toward legalizing same-sex unions: Thailand is slowly but surely moving towards marriage equality, as lawmakers approved two bills that would allow same-sex marriage, and two more that would allow civil partnerships.

🗞️  FRONT PAGE

The Shanghai Daily gives its Thursday front page to the large-scale COVID-19 testing conducted in several districts of Shanghai, as part of measures to stop a recent coronavirus outbreak.

#️⃣  BY THE NUMBERS

273

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports 273 Tesla car crashes in the U.S. in less than a year, with the driver-assistance systems at fault. Tesla is involved in more crashes than other automakers.

📰  STORY OF THE DAY

As global economy tanks, future Russian sanctions get harder for West to swallow

Kyiv wants the West to hit at the heart of the Russian economy, especially its energy exports, as the best weapon Ukraine and its allies may have. But with the EU preparing its 7th package of sanctions, it must strike a delicate balance as the global economy is on the brink of a major crisis, reports Oleksandr Detsyk for Livy Bereg.

🇪🇺 The European Union has begun work on its seventh package of sanctions against Russia. Even though it is delaying the implementation of more effective oil and gas sanctions, Russia is expected to face a tangible economic downturn in the summer. Therefore, a full-scale financial crisis is likely to take place in autumn.

⛽ In general, the strategic goal of Ukraine vis-a-vis the sanctions is to completely cut off Russia from the European energy market. Ukraine believes that delayed introduction of the sixth package has reduced the effectiveness of previous measures, including restrictions on the financial system. Russia kept looking for workarounds and adapting to the sanctions.

💸 EU countries are holding off on the full energy embargo explaining this by the crisis it would bring to their respective economies. Now this working group from the president's office is actively trying to push for the implementation of a special tariff on Russian energy exports to Europe. If Europe cannot yet completely abandon Russian energy resources, we could envision imposing additional levies on them. The proceeds will be transferred to Ukraine in the form of reparations. Such ideas are worth exploring: if the will is there, solutions can be found.

➡️ Read more on Worldcrunch.com

📣 VERBATIM

Ukraine must resist and win.

— French President Emmanuel Macron during his visit to Irpin, a suburb of Kyiv, Ukraine, with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, responding to a question about his previous remarks that Russia must not be humiliated and the need for negotiations. While in Irpin, Macron also praised Ukrainian heroism, saying “It’s here, among other places, that the Ukrainians stopped the Russian army descending onto Kyiv. It represents the heroism of the army, but also of the Ukrainian population. And alongside that, you have traces of barbarism.”

✍️ Newsletter by McKenna Johnson, Joel Silvestri, Lisa Berdet and Lila Paulou


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FOCUS: Russia-Ukraine War

Ukraine Is Turning Into A "New Israel" — Where Everyone Is A Soldier

From businessmen to farmers, Ukrainian society has been militarizing for the past six months to defend its sovereignty. In the future it may find itself like Israel, permanently armed to protect its sovereignty.

Ukrainian civilians learn how to shoot and other military skills at a shooting range in Lviv on July 30, 2022.

Guillaume Ptak

KYIV — The war in Ukraine has reached a turning point. Vladimir Putin's army has suffered its worst setback since the beginning of the invasion. The Russian army has experienced a counter-offensive that many experts consider masterful, so it must retreat and cede vast territories to its opponent.

The lightning victory that the head of the Kremlin had dreamed of never took place. The losses are considerable — Ukrainian troops on the battlefield now outnumber the Russians.

Stay up-to-date with the latest on the Russia-Ukraine war, with our exclusive international coverage.

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On April 5, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky predicted that at the end of the conflict, Ukraine would become a "big Israel". In an interview with Ukrainian media, he said then, "In all the institutions, supermarkets, cinemas, there will be people with weapons."

The problem of national security will be the country's most important one in the next decade. An "absolutely liberal, and European" society would therefore no longer be on the agenda, according to the Ukrainian president.

Having long since swapped his suit and tie for a jacket or a khaki T-shirt during his public appearances, Zelensky has undeniably become one of the symbols of this growing militarization of Ukrainian society. However, the president claimed that Ukraine would not become an "authoritarian" regime: "An authoritarian state would lose to Russia. Ukrainians know what they are fighting for."

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

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