Your Monday briefing: Putin and Xi will meet in Moscow
Russia defends the transfers on humanitarian grounds and Moscow has signaled that the deportations will continue. Putin’s trip to Crimea included a visit to a children’s center.
Beijing is Moscow’s most important ally and has been a crucial economic partner throughout the war. Today’s meeting will give Putin the opportunity to argue that international support for Ukraine is limited to the West, a familiar refrain.
China sees Xi’s three-day visit as an opportunity to push Putin into peace talks, hinting that a call with Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine’s president, could follow. But neither Ukraine nor Russia appear ready to negotiate, and the visit is widely seen as the clearest sign of Xi’s support for Putin.
Western officials have warned that China is considering supplying weapons to Russia, which Beijing denies. And Xi is increasingly determined to challenge the idea of a US-led world order by pulling other countries into an orbit closer to China.
The importance of Mariupol
For Ukraine, it is a symbol of the country’s agony and resistance. The city was razed by Russian forces. The UN said at least 1,300 people died in the battle there, but the true toll was likely thousands more. Ukraine’s last defenders endured an 80-day siege at a steel mill.
For Russia, Mariupol is at the center of the Kremlin pirouette. It’s in the Donbass region, and Putin used the bogus argument that Ukraine was committing “genocide” there to help justify the invasion. This visit was Putin’s closest to the front lines since the invasion.
Trump says his arrest is imminent
Former President Donald Trump claimed he would be arrested tomorrow and urged his supporters to rally to his side. But while the Manhattan District Attorney has signaled that he is preparing to file felony charges and that a grand jury should indict Donald Trump, the timing is unclear.
Trump would be the first former president to be charged with a criminal charge. On Saturday morning, Trump on his social media site, Truth Social, called on people to “PROTEST, TAKE BACK OUR NATION!”
A Trump spokesperson quickly balked and said the former president had no direct knowledge of the timing. My colleagues report that prosecutors did not tell Trump’s lawyers when the charges would be sought.
The charges likely stem from a silent payment of $130,000 to porn star Stormy Daniels on the eve of the 2016 election. not been assessed by the New York courts.
race 2024: Trump leads his Republican opponents in most polls.
UBS acquires Credit Suisse
In a hastily arranged deal intended to shore up the global banking industry, UBS has agreed to buy Credit Suisse. Switzerland engineered the deal, which is the most significant consequence of the recent financial turmoil so far.
UBSis is set to buy its embattled rival for a fraction of the $9.5 billion it was valued at on Friday. To help support UBS, the Swiss National Bank has agreed to lend up to $108.8 billion.
Swiss government leaders and regulators said the deal was the most effective way to reassure investors after Credit Suisse shares tumbled in the wake of the Silicon Valley Bank implosion this month.
Context: Credit Suisse has been hit by the panic, but its problems are largely its fault. Recent scandals and financial missteps have cost it billions of dollars and damaged its reputation.
Camp Naru is a haven for Korean Americans. It is designed to help young people in the diaspora – adopted or not – to reconnect with their heritage and with each other.
ARTS AND IDEAS
The invasion of Iraq, 20 years later
On March 20, 2003, the United States invaded Iraq as part of its “war on terror” after the al-Qaeda attacks of September 11, 2001. It began with an air assault to overthrow Saddam Hussein and became an occupation, then a war against an insurgency, then a sectarian civil war.
Iraq is now freer, but not more optimistic. Sectarian fighting continues. The oil-rich nation is hampered by corruption. There are few jobs in the private sector and many government jobs require bribes to obtain. Almost everyone has lost someone in war.
Iran, its longtime enemy, has taken advantage of this. He built loyal militias inside Iraq, gained deep political influence and reaped economic gains. Iran’s rise has exposed the unintended consequences of US strategy, analysts and former officials say.
Justification: Historians and officials still debate the justification for the American invasion.
For more: See photos from the war.
PLAY, WATCH, EAT
What to cook
That’s it for today’s briefing. See you next time. – Amelie
PS Henry Fountain, a climate journalist whose name once appeared in a “Jeopardy!” index, is retiring after 28 years at the Times.
Start your week with this story about a Japanese theme park dedicated to Hayao Miyazaki and this episode of “The Daily” about the banking crisis.
I hope you had a good weekend! You can always reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.