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Russian cabinet official dies during training drill in Arctic

Russia’s emergency situations minister died on Wednesday in the Arctic after he leaped into the ocean to save a film maker who had fallen into the water during a training drill, the ministry said. Yevgeny Zinichev, 53, was previously a member of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s security detail and is the first Russian cabinet minister to die on duty.
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Britney Spears' father files petition to end her conservatorship

James Spears, father of pop music star Britney Spears, filed a petition on Tuesday asking the court to “seriously consider whether this conservatorship is no longer required.” Spears’ father agreed earlier this year to step down as his daughter’s conservator after she asked a court to remove him. The singer has been living under the conservatorship for 13 years.

Mexico Supreme Court rules criminalizing abortion is unconstitutional

Mexico’s Supreme Court ruled late Tuesday that criminalizing abortion is unconstitutional, paving the way for the overturn of anti-abortion laws around the country. Activists have said they will use the precedent set by the court’s unanimous ruling to challenge laws currently on the books that in some cases impose prison terms on women who terminate a pregnancy.
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UK prime minister announces tax increase to pay for national healthcare

U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Tuesday announced plans to raise the payroll tax paid by workers and employers by 1.25 percentage points to address a shortfall in health funding partly due to spending on the COVID-19 pandemic. The tax will also be applied to the tax on shareholder dividends. Johnson said it would be “irresponsible” to borrow money to cover the increased needs of the U.K.’s National Health Service.

Myanmar opposition calls for uprising against military junta

Myanmar’s opposition shadow government on Tuesday called for a “people’s defensive war” against the military junta, which seized power in February. The shadow government, made up of democratically elected officials who were barred from taking power after the coup, called on citizens to rise up against the military junta “in every corner of the country.”
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Texas governor signs voting bill into law

Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Tuesday signed into law an elections bill that adds restrictions on when and how Texans can vote. The signing followed months of efforts by Democrats in the state legislature to block the law, which they say will disproportionately affect minority voters. The law is already the target of three federal lawsuits.
Knowhere News

Biden still hoping to complete Afghanistan evacuation by Aug. 31

U.S. President Joe Biden in an address to the nation on Tuesday after a virtual meeting with G7 leaders, said the U.S. was “on pace” to complete the evacuation by Aug. 31 of the tens of thousands of people now at Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport clamoring to escape the Taliban after it captured the city over a week ago, virtually completing its takeover of Afghanistan.