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MENLO PARK - Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is spearheading a new initiative to bring Internet access to "the next five billion people," those too poor or disconnected to be able to get online.

The new global partnership, Internet.org, launches Wednesday, and also includes several major mobile phone companies. Here's an introduction video:

"Everything Facebook has done has been about giving all people around the world the power to connect," Zuckerberg said in a press release. "There are huge barriers in developing countries to connecting and joining the knowledge economy. Internet.org brings together a global partnership that will work to overcome these challenges, including making internet access available to those who cannot currently afford it."
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Police officers detain a protester during an unauthorized rally against a partial military draft mobilization announced by Russia's President Putin.

Cameron Manley, Lila Paulou and Emma Albright

In response to Vladimir Putin’s announcement of partial mobilization, protesters flocked to the streets in outrage across Russia. By Thursday morning, Russian independent monitoring group OVD, puts the number of arrests as a result of the protests at 1,300.

Perhaps more telling for both public opinion and the potential effectiveness of the mobilization are mulitple indications of Russian trying to leave the country. Travel sales websites inside the country indicate that all direct flights to nations that do not require Russian visas are sold out until Friday at least.

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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.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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