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Ukrainian Family Holds Out Hope Son Will Be Released by Russians
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Ukrainian Family Holds Out Hope Son Will Be Released by Russians

His attempts to escape the Russian siege had failed. He and his fellow Ukrainian marines were surrounded, dozens of miles from friendly lines. They were nearly out of food and water. Some panicked, others quietly resigned themselves to what would come next.Then, about a day later, Serhiy Hrebinyk, a senior sailor, and his comrades emerged from their final holdout inside the sprawling Ilyich Iron and Steel Works in the southern Ukrainian city of Mariupol. He quickly messaged his older sister: “Hi Anna. Our brigade surrenders in captivity today. Me too. I don’t know what will happen next. I love you all.”That was April 12, 2022.Nearly two years later, on the second anniversary of the start of Russia’s full-scale invasion, Serhiy, now 24, remains in captivity as a prisoner of war, held somewh...
Mexico’s President Faces Inquiry for Disclosing Phone Number of Times Journalist
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Mexico’s President Faces Inquiry for Disclosing Phone Number of Times Journalist

Mexico’s freedom of information institute, a government agency, said Thursday that it would start an investigation into the president’s disclosure on national television of the personal cellphone number of a journalist for The New York Times.The investigation centers on a decision by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador during a televised news conference on Thursday that left many aghast in Mexico, one of the deadliest countries in the world for journalists. At least 128 journalists have been killed in Mexico since 2006, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists.During the news conference, Mr. López Obrador read aloud from an email from Natalie Kitroeff, The New York Times’s bureau chief for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. She had requested comment for an article reveal...
U.S. Defends Israel at UN Court Hearing on Occupation: Live Updates
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U.S. Defends Israel at UN Court Hearing on Occupation: Live Updates

A day after vetoing calls for an immediate cease-fire in Gaza, the United States on Wednesday defended Israel’s decades-long occupation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem, arguing at the United Nations’ highest court that Israel faced “very real security needs.”The latest United States defense of Israel on the global stage came at the International Court of Justice in The Hague, where Richard C. Visek, the acting legal adviser at the U.S. State Department, urged a 15-judge panel not to call for Israel’s immediate withdrawal from occupied Palestinian territory.He said that only the establishment of an independent Palestinian state alongside Israel could bring about lasting peace, repeating a longstanding U.S. position but one whose prospects appear even more elusive amid the war in Gaza.Th...
The Wife of Haiti’s Assassinated President Is Accused in His Killing
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The Wife of Haiti’s Assassinated President Is Accused in His Killing

A Haitian judge has indicted 51 people for their roles in the 2021 assassination of President Jovenel Moïse, including his wife, Martine Moïse, who is accused of being an accomplice, despite being seriously wounded in the attack.A 122-page copy of the indictment by Judge Walther Voltaire that was provided to The New York Times does not accuse her of planning the killing nor does it offer any direct evidence of her involvement.Instead, it says that she and other accomplices gave statements that were contradicted by other witnesses, suggesting that they were complicit in the killing. The indictment also cites one of the main defendants in the case in custody in Haiti, who claimed that Mrs. Moïse was plotting with others to take over the presidency.The accusations echo those contained in a cr...
Sydney Asbestos Problem Grows as Taylor Swift Venue Tests Negative
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Sydney Asbestos Problem Grows as Taylor Swift Venue Tests Negative

Officials in Sydney, Australia, said on Sunday that they had found traces of asbestos at 34 public sites across the city in recent weeks, and that a venue for an upcoming Taylor Swift concert was declared free of the toxic mineral.The hunt for asbestos in recycled mulch in the city began last month, and sites that have tested positive include parks and the grounds of hospitals, train stations, supermarkets and four schools, two of which have temporarily closed. The figures released by the Environmental Protection Agency of New South Wales on Sunday included two new sites, both schools.The scandal has received international attention in part because the authorities have been testing mulch on the grounds of Sydney Olympic Park, where Ms. Swift is scheduled to perform four shows starting on F...
Venezuela Expels U.N. Human Rights Agency
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Venezuela Expels U.N. Human Rights Agency

A United Nations agency that monitors and defends human rights was ordered on Thursday to leave Venezuela by the government of President Nicolás Maduro, an extraordinary move that will further strip the country of foreign oversight at a time when its government stands accused of intensifying repression.The announcement by Yván Gil, the foreign minister, comes just days after the detention and disappearance of Rocío San Miguel, a prominent security expert and human rights advocate.Following her detention, several U.N. entities issued online statements expressing concern about the arrest, some calling it part of a pattern in which the government tries to silence critics through intimidation.Mr. Gil said he was giving the staff of the U.N. Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights 72 h...
As China Tries to Present a Friendlier Image, a New Face Emerges
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As China Tries to Present a Friendlier Image, a New Face Emerges

Faced with declining foreign investment at home, China has sought to soften its image in the United States and Europe and make nice with some of its neighbors. One Communist Party official has played an unusually prominent role in the shift in tone.In New York, he told an audience of scholars and businesspeople that China did not seek to rewrite the United States-led global order. In Paris, he said that China’s modernization would benefit Europe and the world. In Beijing, he told the ambassador of India, a regional rival, that China hoped relations would “return to a healthy and stable” track.The official, Liu Jianchao, heads the Communist Party’s diplomatic arm, a body that promotes the party’s ideology and influence abroad. His recent engagements suggest to analysts, however, that he has...
Brazil’s Carnival Only Starts When 12-Foot John Travolta Arrives
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Brazil’s Carnival Only Starts When 12-Foot John Travolta Arrives

It was near the start of one of Brazil’s most famous Carnival celebrations, in the northern seaside city of Olinda, and the town plaza was jammed with thousands of revelers. They were all awaiting their idol.Just before 9 p.m., the doors to a dance hall swung open, a brass band pushed into the crowd and the star everyone had been waiting for stepped out: a 12-foot puppet of John Travolta.Confetti sprayed, the band began playing a catchy tune and the crowd sang along: “John Travolta is really cool. Throwing a great party. And in Olinda, the best carnival.” (It rhymes in Portuguese.)The giant John Travolta, perched on the head of a puppeteer, then led a parade through the cobblestone streets.The “boneco,” as such giant puppets are known in Brazil, wore a bedazzled disco-era turtleneck and su...
For Many in Rafah, Displacement is a Recurring Nightmare
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For Many in Rafah, Displacement is a Recurring Nightmare

Less than two weeks after bombs began raining down on the Gaza Strip, Ghada al-Kurd arrived in the southern city of Khan Younis. She had already been displaced three times, and hoped it would be her final journey to safety. But three months later, Israeli forces advanced south. Ms. al-Kurd, 37, speaking by telephone, said she, her sister, brother-in-law, and four nieces and nephews abandoned the tent they had been sharing “without taking anything with us,” and headed to Rafah, Gaza’s southernmost city.Many of the roughly 1.7 million Gazans that U.N. agencies say have been displaced by Israel’s relentless bombardment and ground invasion have fled repeatedly over the course of a war that had now entered its fifth month. And Ms. al-Kurd’s family members number among more than a million peopl...
Walter Shawlee, the Sovereign of Slide Rules, Is Dead at 73
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Walter Shawlee, the Sovereign of Slide Rules, Is Dead at 73

For about 350 years, humanity’s most innovative hand-held computer was something called a slide rule. As typewriters once symbolized the writer, slide rules symbolized the engineer.These analog calculators came in metal, wood, plastic and even bamboo, and they could be found all over the world. Their functions included computing higher-order multiplications, exponents and logarithms, among other mathematical operations. They were usually long and rectangular with a retractable middle segment, and they featured dense fields of letters, lines and numbers stacked on top of one another.They looked almost comically abstruse, as if they might be used as paddles in the hazing rituals of a math fraternity.Non-nerds struggled to make sense of them. Then, in the early 1970s, lightweight electronic c...