International Briefs

Ukraine’s parliament passes a law to boost much-needed conscripts

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukraine’s parliament has passed a controversial law that will govern how the country calls up new soldiers at a time when it needs to replenish depleted forces who are increasingly struggling to fend off Russia’s advance. The law was passed Thursday against a backdrop of an escalating Russian campaign that has devastated Ukraine’s energy infrastructure in recent weeks. Authorities said overnight missile and drone attacks completely destroyed the Trypilska thermal power plant.

Vietnam sentences real estate tycoon Truong My Lan to death

HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — A Vietnam court has sentenced real estate tycoon Truong My Lan to death in the country’s largest financial fraud case. The 67-year-old chair of real estate company Van Thinh Phat was accused of fraud amounting to $12.5 billion — nearly 3% of the country’s 2022 GDP. She illegally controlled the Saigon Joint Stock Commercial Bank between 2012 to 2022, siphoning off funds through thousands of ghost companies and bribes to government officials. State media VnExpress reported Lan allowed 2,500 loans that resulted in losses of $27 billion to the bank, and must compensate SCB.

Wife of Assange says comments mean case could be moving in the right direction

LONDON (AP) — The wife of Julian Assange says her husband’s legal case “could be moving in the right direction.” Stella Assnge spoke Thursday after President Joe Biden confirmed the U.S. may drop charges against the imprisoned WikiLeaks founder. It came as supporters in several cities rallied to demand the release of Assange, on the fifth anniversary of his incarceration in London’s high-security Belmarsh prison. Biden said Wednesday that his administration is “considering” a request from Australia to drop the decade-long U.S. push to prosecute Assange, who is Australian, for publishing a trove of classified American documents.

Poland’s kids rejoice over new rules against homework

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Many kids in Poland are rejoicing over strict limits imposed by the government on the amount of homework. Teachers and parents aren’t so sure. The decree says teachers can’t give required homework to kids in the first to third grades. For grades four to eight, homework should be optional and not count towards a grade. The change comes amid a broad discussion about the need to modernize Poland’s education system. Critics say the system has put too much emphasis on rote learning and not enough on critical thinking and creativity.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

Today's breaking news and more in your inbox
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper? *

Starting at $4.38/week.

Subscribe Today