Financial Times – Henry Foy and Laura Pitel / Finland and Sweden poised to join NATO after Turkey drops veto
- Turkey has dropped its opposition to Finland and Sweden becoming members of Nato, paving the way for the Nordic countries to join the alliance in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
- The three countries signed a joint memorandum after hours of talks on Tuesday brokered by Nato, ending a six-week veto by Ankara linked to terrorism concerns.
- The agreement on the eve of Nato’s annual summit in Madrid ended a dispute that threatened to overshadow an event billed as a demonstration of unity against Russia, support for Ukraine and the alliance’s 10-year “strategic concept”, which is designed to revamp its approach to defending its eastern European allies.
- “Our foreign ministers signed a trilateral memorandum, which confirms that Turkey will at the Madrid summit this week support the invitation of Finland and Sweden to become members of Nato,” Finland’s president Sauli Niinistö said. “The concrete steps of our accession to Nato will be agreed by the Nato allies during the next two days, but that decision is now imminent.”
- Foreign Affairs – Charles A. Kupchan / NATO’s hard road ahead
The Washington Post – Mike DeBonis and Jacqueline Alemany / Trump sought to lead armed mob to Capitol on Jan. 6, aide says
- A former White House official revealed explosive new details Tuesday about President Donald Trump’s actions on Jan. 6, 2021, telling Congress that he knew his supporters were carrying weapons, insisted on personally leading the armed mob to the Capitol, physically assailed the senior Secret Service agent who told him it was not possible, expressed support for the hanging of his own vice president, and mused about pardoning the rioters.
- The testimony of Cassidy Hutchinson, who was an assistant to then-White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, was the most chilling to date in the House select committee’s Jan. 6 investigation. Recounting granular detail and private dialogue, she presented to the public a penetrating account of Trump’s actions and mind-set as the Capitol came under siege from his own supporters, who were determined to stop the counting of electoral votes and impede the certification of Joe Biden’s victory.
- Testifying alone, her appearance punctuated by clips from taped depositions given by herself and others, the 25-year-old Hutchinson detailed how Trump and other powerful officials around him alternately encouraged, tolerated and excused the insurrection as it unfolded in front of them.
- Informed that his supporters had come to the rally armed with weapons, Trump urged that security precautions at his rally be lifted, Hutchinson testified.
- The Guardian – Martin Pengelly / ‘Things might get real, real bad’: key takeaways from latest January 6 hearing
Financial Times – Sam Fleming, Ian Smith and Tom Wilson / How the G7 countries plan to hurt Russia’s oil bonanza
- The goal set out by G7 leaders in the Bavarian Alps on Tuesday was ambitious: to prevent Russia profiting from its “war of aggression” in Ukraine, which has sent energy prices soaring, while minimising the economic damage around the world caused by the rises.
- US president Joe Biden and his allies discussed imposing an untested new mechanism that aims to impose a ceiling on Russian oil prices. German chancellor and G7 host Olaf Scholz called the plans “very ambitious” and said that a lot would have to fall into place for them to be realised.
- What is being proposed? The idea of a price cap is to permit Russian oil to reach markets that have not imposed import bans — notably lower- and middle-income countries — in order to limit upward pressure on global oil prices, while curbing revenue to Moscow.
- The G7 and EU have not indicated where the price cap would be set, saying only that it would be chosen in conjunction with “international partners”. Analysts have suggested it could be above Russia’s cost of production — but not too much higher — to maintain its incentive to export.
- Politico – Karl Mathiesen and David M. Herszenhorn / View from the summit: A self-defeating G7 fails on all fronts
- EU countries clinched deals on proposed laws to combat climate change early Wednesday, backing a 2035 phase-out of new fossil fuel car sales and a multibillion-euro fund to shield poorer citizens from CO2 costs.
- After more than 16 hours of negotiations, environment ministers from the European Union’s 27 member states agreed their joint positions on five laws, part of a broader package of measures to slash planet-warming emissions this decade.
- “The climate crisis and its consequences are clear, and so policy is unavoidable,” EU climate policy chief Frans Timmermans said, adding that he thought the invasion of Ukraine by top gas supplier Russia was spurring countries to quit fossil fuels faster.
- Ministers supported core parts of the package that the European Commission first proposed last summer, including a law requiring new cars sold in the EU to emit zero CO2 from 2035. That would make it impossible to sell internal-combustion engine cars.
- Bloomberg – John Ainger and Ewa Krukowska / EU takes historic step to phase out combustion engines by 2035
Today’s longer reads: