Tuesday Briefing: Putin’s Victory Spectacle

A day after he was declared victor in Russia’s rubber-stamp presidential election, Vladimir Putin used a celebration yesterday to signal that the war against Ukraine would continue to dominate his rule — and that his fight to add territory to Russia wasn’t over.

At the celebration held in Red Square, Putin highlighted Russia’s control of Crimea. He stood in front of a banner celebrating the 10th anniversary of the peninsula’s annexation, and spoke about bringing the people of eastern Ukraine “back to their home family.”

Repeating a warning he made last summer, Putin said that Russia could seek to create a “security zone” on Ukrainian territory that Russia does not currently control.

Russians are now bracing for what might come next. For many, the big worry is of another military draft. And analysts believe that creating such a buffer zone would require capturing parts of the Kharkiv region of Ukraine — which could require a new mobilization.

Election results: The authorities said that Putin had won more than 87 percent of the vote. Here are takeaways.

Polls: The Kremlin may have felt more comfortable orchestrating such a large margin of victory because Putin’s approval rating has climbed during the war in independent polls. But a poll from late January also found that more than half of respondents supported restoring relations with Western countries and a truce with Ukraine.

Other updates:

Gambian lawmakers voted yesterday to revoke a ban on female genital cutting. If the bill passes the final stages, which analysts said is likely, the country would be the first nation to roll back the protections for girls that were enacted in 2015.

An influential imam in Gambia, a Muslim-majority country in West Africa, led calls to repeal the ban, claiming that cutting is a religious obligation and is important culturally. The practice is internationally recognized as a gross violation of human rights and is a leading cause of death in the countries where it is practiced.

Israeli forces used tanks and bulldozers yesterday in an attack on Al-Shifa Hospital in northern Gaza. The facility, the largest hospital in Gaza, has been a flashpoint of the war: Israel and U.S. spy agencies believe Hamas has used the hospital as a command center, which Hamas denies.

Israel said that it was targeting top Hamas officials who had regrouped at Al-Shifa, and that its soldiers returned Hamas’s fire. Gazan health authorities said Israel had launched missiles at the complex and fired into surgery rooms. Details of the fighting could not be verified. Both sides said combatants had been killed.

Background: Evidence examined by The Times suggested Hamas used the hospital for cover and maintained a tunnel beneath it, but Israel has struggled to prove that it is a command center.

The cryptocurrency market crashed two years ago. But it makes for a booming industry at internet cafes in the Philippines, where people can make around twice the nation’s minimum wage by playing crypto-earning games.

Shakira has had a rough couple of years.

After decades of hit singles and groundbreaking Latin-pop crossovers, she broke up with her partner of 11 years, the father of her two sons. She helped her father through hospitalizations and brain surgery and settled a Spanish tax evasion case, paying a fine of about $8.2 million.

The breakup and the dissolution of her family form the backbone of her first album in seven years, “Las Mujeres Ya No Lloran,” which translates to “Women No Longer Cry.” Our critic spoke with Shakira about her new album, which comes out on Friday.

“If life gives you lemons, you make lemonade,” she said. “That’s what I did with this album — use my own creativity to process my frustration and my anger and my sadness. I transmuted or transformed pain into productivity.”

Source link

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top