Republican Party, International Women’s Day, Lucknow: Your Morning Briefing

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Credit Doug Mills/The New York Times

3. Details continue to emerge about Russia’s multipronged effort to sway the 2016 presidential election, including its attempts to enlist the Trump campaign. The latest: A top Russian official made a backdoor offer to set up a meeting between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin, which Jared Kushner, above, ultimately rejected.

Under questioning by Congress, Attorney General Jeff Sessions repeatedly claimed not to have been lying in the past, but said news accounts had now jogged his memory about a campaign aide’s offer to arrange a similar meeting.

Separately, he has begun considering appointing a special counsel to investigate allegations about Hillary Clinton, a potential bow to White House pressure that our correspondent says “would shatter post-Watergate norms.”


Credit DroneBase, via Associated Press

4. Negotiators at the U.N. climate conference in Bonn, Germany, hammered out the beginnings of a “rule book” to chart progress in scaling back carbon emissions. It didn’t seem to square with the urgency expressed by the German chancellor, who called climate change “an issue determining our destiny as mankind.” (An overview of our Bonn coverage is here.)

South Dakota faced a more immediate concern: a 210,000-gallon oil leak, above, from the Keystone Pipeline, which carries crude from Canada. It came just days before Nebraska’s regulators are to decide whether to give final approval to a different, controversial pipeline, Keystone XL, which would be operated by the same company.


Credit Lynsey Addario for The New York Times

5. Robert

Mugabe, who has ruled Zimbabwe for 37 years, was ousted on Sunday as leader of his ZANU-PF party.

Mr. Mugabe, 93, is now set to negotiate his departure as the country’s president with the army commander who had him placed under house arrest last week.


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Another strongman, known as the Crocodile, has been named Mr. Mugabe’s successor as party leader. The party vote came a day after thousands of Zimbabweans took to the streets to celebrate Mr. Mugabe’s stunning fall from power, which began with a military takeover.

Above, Mr. Mugabe in 2012 with his wife, Grace, a significant player in Zimbabwe’s politics who was barred from the party for life on Sunday.

On a separate note, the Trump administration paused a decision related to Zimbabwe that set off an international uproar: allowing U.S. hunters to bring home trophies from elephant hunts there.


Credit Julie Jacobson/Associated Press

6. Speaking

of trophies: “Salvator Mundi,” a 26-inch-tall oil painting attributed to Leonardo da Vinci, sold for a stunning $450.3 million — the most ever paid at an art auction. And that was despite its damaged condition and questionable authenticity. (Our critic says it’s no Mona Lisa.)

The buyer’s identity remains unknown.

The takeaway for the rest of us: marketing! And the recognition that art figures as much as stocks in financiers’ portfolios.

Market Snapshot View Full Overview


    Credit Giles Price/Institute, for The New York Times

    7. An exhaustive, on-the-ground investigation presented in The Times Magazine reveals that the U.S.-led coalition is killing far more Iraqi civilians than previously acknowledged in its “precision” air campaign against the Islamic State — 31 times more, in fact.

    At the same time, Iraq is trying to come to grips with the number of those killed by the Islamic State. At least 70 mass graves have been found. Our new Baghdad bureau chief shares the story of an Iraqi shepherd left to bury the bodies of his neighbors.

    Neighboring Iran continues to pick up the pieces after suffering the world’s most deadly earthquake this year.


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    Credit Eve Edelheit for The New York Times

    8. There’s a new Great Migration.

    Puerto Ricans are turning up in droves in Florida, particularly Orlando, in a post-Hurricane Maria exodus so large it rivals those from New Orleans to Houston after Hurricane Katrina and from Cuba to Miami during the Mariel boatlift. Many are staying with friends and family, above.

    Back on the island, the state of constant uncertainty caused by a faltering power grid and a flimsy economy has unleashed a mental health crisis.

    “When it starts raining, they have episodes of anxiety because they think their house is going to flood again,” said a clinical psychologist. “They have heart palpitations, sweating, catastrophic thoughts. They think ‘I’m going to drown,’ ‘I’m going to die,’ ‘I’m going to lose everything.’”


    Credit NBC

    9. “Saturday Night Live” took aim at Al Franken, an alumnus of the show, over a 2006 photo showing him with his hands extended over a sleeping woman’s breasts.

    “Sure, this was taken before Franken ran for public office, but it was also taken after he was a sophomore in high school,” Colin Jost, above, said on “Weekend Update.” “It’s pretty hard to be like, ‘Oh, come on, he didn’t know any better. He was only 55.’”


    Credit Giulia Marchi for The New York Times

    10. Finally, single men in China are turning to a distinctly 21st-century coach for a leg up in the dating scene. In a country where last year men outnumbered women by 33.6 million, the “Fall in Love Emotional Education” school offers instruction in grooming, dressing and, critically, making an approach.

    The school’s founder says 90 percent of its graduates, who are trained in personal style (“sleeves should be folded up above the elbow”) and the art of the pensive profile picture, end up with girlfriends.

    Have a great week.


    Your Weekend Briefing is published Sundays at 6 a.m. Eastern.

    And don’t miss Your Morning Briefing, weekdays at 6 a.m. Eastern, and Your Evening Briefing, weeknights at 6 p.m. Eastern.

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