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Geopolitics

Mykolaiv Postcard: Life On Ukraine's Creeping Southern Front Line

The fate of Mykolaiv and surrounding areas of southern Ukraine are crucial in the next stage of the war. A reporter visits local villages ... and the troops on the front line.

MYKOLAIV — This large port city in eastern Ukraine carries great strategic importance for the war. After the Russian army managed to destroy Mariupol and occupy most of the Kherson region, which has access to the annexed Crimea, it leaves Mykolaiv, along with Odessa, as the largest port cities with access to the Black Sea.

If these cities fall, Ukraine will not only lose control over the eastern territories, but also access to the Black Sea, which will completely halt exports and imports by sea.

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Needless to say, the fate of Mykolaiv is highly important. And with hundreds of thousands of people still living in the city and surrounding region, a reporter from the Ukrainian media Livy Bereg visited one of the villages on Mykolaiv's outskirts to see for herself how Ukrainians live in close proximity to the Russian army.

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Putin Declares Victory In Luhansk, July 4 Shooting, Dry Italy

👋 નમસ્તે!*

Welcome to Tuesday, where Putin declares victory in Luhansk, a 22-year-old man is arrested in connection with the July 4 Parade shooting that killed six north of Chicago, and New Zealand is batting for equal pay. Meanwhile, from Dijon mustard to potatoes by way of pasta, we look at food shortages around the world.

[*Namaste - Gujarati, India]

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Lysychansk Falls, Copenhagen Mall Shooting, Formula One Scare

👋 Olá!*

Welcome to Monday, where most of Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region is now under Russian control, three die in a Copenhagen mall shooting, and botanists make a big surprise discovery. Meanwhile, we focus on John Lee, who embodies the change afoot in Hong Kong as it marks 25 years since the UK handover.

[*Portuguese]

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Food Shortages Around The World, Product By Product

The war in Ukraine and the climate crisis have been devastating for food production. Here's a look at some of the traditional foods from around the world that might be hard to find on supermarket shelves.

The consequences of the invasion of Ukraine by Russia have been far-reaching. A Russian blockade of the Black Sea has meant Ukraine, known as “Europe’s breadbasket,” has been unable to export much of its huge harvests of wheat, barley and sunflower oil.

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So even those thousands of miles from the battlefields have been hit by the soaring prices of basic necessities.

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Geopolitics
Amyn Sajoo

Russia, Ukraine And The West's Double Standard On International Law

With a passion that recalls the aftermath of World War II, politicians and commentators are demanding a global order that takes seriously the rules of the United Nations Charter — notably on respect for sovereignty and fundamental human rights.

While Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is the immediate spur, China’s conduct in the Indo-Pacific region has prompted similar calls.

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It’s more than a fight between autocracies and democracies, Fareed Zakaria recently argued in the Washington Post. This moment requires a rules-based international order that has inclusive global appeal beyond western interests.

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Geopolitics
Ivan Yakunin

Yes, The War Has Caused A Major Food Crisis — But Russia Can't Fix It Alone

For many countries, the global food crisis has already begun. As enough food to feed the world for several weeks remains trapped in Ukraine, Russia and Turkey met to discuss the problem. But they cannot solve it alone, says independent Russian media Kommersant.

MOSCOW — Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was in Ankara to talk to Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu this week to discuss Ukrainian grain. Lavrov tried to strike an optimistic tone: "Our military is in contact with Turkish friends to discuss the details of these processes, these initiatives. There have never been any obstacles from our side to solve this problem... If the position of authorities in Kyiv has matured, we will only be happy to cooperate."

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Turkey has reported that the Ukrainian side is ready to clear mines from its harbors, which the Russians say has prevented exports, Russian state news agency Ria Novosti reported.

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In The News
Lila Paulou, Lisa Berdet, Anne-Sophie Goninet and Bertrand Hauger

100 Days Of Ukraine War, Shanghai Back In Lockdown, “Turkey” No More

👋 မင်္ဂလာပါ!*

Welcome to Friday, where Ukraine marks 100 days since the beginning of the Russian offensive, French arms manufacturers are accused of complicity in Yemen war crimes, and Turkey says call us Türkiye. Meanwhile, German daily Die Welt tunes in with Anatoly Dremov, a Russian soldier whose on-the-ground war videos are going viral — much to the Kremlin’s chagrin.

[*Mingalaba - Burmese]

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In The News
Lisa Berdet, Joel Silvestri, Lila Paulou and Bertrand Hauger

200,000 Ukrainian Kids Deported, Queen’s Jubilee, Dogs & COVID

👋 Goedemorgen!*

Welcome to Thursday, where Ukrainian President Zelensky says 200,000 children have been forcibly deported to Russia, and a new study shows that man’s best friend can detect COVID. Meanwhile, business magazine America Economia looks at the reasons why the U.S. should commit itself more to the upcoming Summit of the Americas.

[*Flemish]

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Geopolitics
Anna Akage

Ukrainian "Spies And Traitors" Dumped In Russia's Already Crowded Prison System

Russian jails were already struggling thanks to long investigations and an arrest bias. But the conflict in Ukraine has made a bad situation worse in detention centers around the country, with so-called Ukrainian "spies and traitors" locked up without trial.

MOSCOW — From 2006, since the middle of Vladimir Putin's second term in office, the hunt for traitors, spies, and enemies has enveloped the entire Russian Federation.

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From peaceful protesters to journalists, from human rights activists to foreigners suspected of espionage and terrorist activities, thousands of people are being held in detention centers where they spend weeks and sometimes months without charge or awaiting trial.

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Geopolitics
Jacques Attali

Trump's Return? The Rest Of The World Should Start Preparing Now

There is a growing likelihood that Donald Trump will return to the White House in Jan. 2025. Europe must act now to be ready to protect its democracy without relying on its U.S. ally.

-Analysis-

PARIS — I get criticized for working too often off the worst-case scenario. Yet recent events, in France and just about everywhere else in the world, should have by now convinced even the most optimistic that the worst-case is in fact never impossible. The best approach, in any case, is to be prepared.

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It is not too late then to prepare for a certain hypothesis that is more likely every day: the return of Donald Trump to the White House following the next U.S. election on Nov. 5, 2024.

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In The News
Lisa Berdet, Anne-Sophie Goninet, Lila Paulou, Joel Silvestri and Bertrand Hauger.

Key EU Ukraine Summit, Shanghai Reopening, Whale Lost In The Seine

👋 Ahoj!*

Welcome to Monday, where EU leaders try to overcome divisions on Russian sanctions, Shanghai lifts some of its COVID-19 restrictions and a killer whale dies after getting lost in the river Seine. Meanwhile, German Die Welt reports on fears in Georgia that its breakaway territory South Ossetia might be next in the Kremlin’s crosshairs.

[*Czech]

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Geopolitics
Dominique Moïsi

Our 'Emotional' Divide: How The Ukraine War Reveals A World Broken In Two

Russia's invasion has created a stark global divide: them and us. On one side are the countries refusing to condemn Moscow, with the West on the other. It's a dangerous split that could have repercussions far into the future.

-Analysis-

PARIS — "The West and the Rest of Us." That's the title of a 1975 essay written by Nigerian essayist and critic Chinweizu Ibekwe. I've been thinking about his words as the war in Ukraine both reveals and accelerates divisions of the world that I believe are ultimately "emotional" in nature.

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With war returning to Europe and the risk of escalation, there is a gap between the Western view and that of the "others," a distinct "us and them." This gap cannot be explained in strictly geographical, political, and economic terms.

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