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Russia appears to have defaulted on its foreign debt for the first time since the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution, and the U.S. and its allies are taking aim at the former Soviet Union’s second-largest export industry after energy — gold.  On Tuesday, the Group of Seven nations will formally announce a ban on Russian gold imports in their latest round of sanctions over Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. A White House official says the ban is yet another way to block off paths between the Russian economy and the broader global financial system.

Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong has stressed that her country’s security pact with the U.K. and the U.S. will not create nuclear weapons, and says she hopes concerns that it may spark a regional arms race will dissipate over time. Wong told reporters after meeting with her Malaysian counterpart that: “We are not a nuclear power. There are nuclear powers in this region, but Australia is not one of them.” Under the agreement, called AUKUS, Australia is to acquire nuclear-powered submarines. Some countries in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, including Malaysia, fear the pact could escalate tensions in hot spots such as the disputed South China Sea, and have warned the pact will threaten regional stability.

Forty-six people have been found dead after being abandoned in a tractor-trailer on a remote back road in Texas. It's the latest tragedy to claim the lives of migrants smuggled across the border from Mexico to the U.S. Sixteen people were hospitalized, including four children. San Antonio Police Chief William McManus said a city worker was alerted to the situation by a cry for help shortly before 6 p.m. Monday. Fire Chief Charles Hood said 12 of those taken to hospitals were adults and four were children. He said they were hot to the touch and dehydrated, and no water was found in the trailer.

The House panel investigating the U.S. Capitol insurrection is holding a surprise hearing on Tuesday with an unidentified witness. The last-minute proceedings are being cloaked in extraordinary secrecy, raising expectations for new bombshells in the sweeping investigation into the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection. The hearing is scheduled for 1 p.m. Tuesday. It was announced with 24 hours' notice while lawmakers are away from Washington on a two-week recess. The subject of the hearings is so far unclear, but the panel’s announcement on Monday said it would be “to present recently obtained evidence and receive witness testimony.”

The Supreme Court’s decision to overturn national protections for abortion has set off a contest between Democratic and Republican lawmakers over whose policies would do more to help vulnerable mothers and children. It's a key issue going into the midterm elections. Republicans such as Florida Sen. Rick Scott say that GOP lawmakers have the responsibility to “do everything in our power to meet the needs of struggling women and their families so they can choose life.” Democrats suggest their rivals are hypocrites who would offer half-measures at best and that voters should judge them accordingly.

Six states are holding congressional primary elections, primary runoffs or special elections on Tuesday. Many of the Republican races will test former President Donald Trump’s national influence. Others could provide the first hints of how voters are reacting to the Supreme Court’s decision on abortion. In Colorado, Republican congresswoman Lauren Boebert is trying to beat back a challenge from a more mainstream Republican. Two Republican House incumbents in Mississippi are facing runoff primaries. In Illinois, Republican congresswoman Mary Miller is seeking a victory after calling the Supreme Court's abortion decision a “historic victory for white life." Her campaign says she meant to say a victory for the “right to life.”

Companies in Maryland and Florida are purportedly trying to pay Genevieve Gwynne with three $1,800 checks drawn on banks in New York and Arkansas. Those banks are real, but the companies say the checks are phony. Gwynn doesn't understand why they would be sending her money at all. She suspects it's a scam.


The Roanoke Times and multiple advertisers are sponsoring day camp slots for two children a week for three consecutive weeks in July. The Discover Day Camp at Camp Roanoke in Roanoke County is a weeklong day camp for rising second to fifth graders including archery, climbing tower, team building initiatives, environmental education, canoeing (ages 9+), hiking, field games, and a wide range of other activities.

A few readers wrote and called the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6 Attack on the U.S. Capitol a partisan witch hunt. Meanwhile, dozens of others filled my inbox expressing outrage about what they've learned in then committee's recent hearings.

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