World this week
Russian authorities accused Ukraine of attempting to attack the Kremlin with two drones overnight in an effort to assassinate President Vladimir Putin. The Ukrainian government denied any involvement. The Kremlin decried the alleged attack attempt as a "terrorist act" and said Russian military and security forces "disabled" the drones before they could strike. It did not elaborate. A statement on the Kremlin's website said debris from the unmanned aerial vehicles fell on the grounds of the seat of Russia's government but did not cause any damage.
The statement did not explain what caused the drones to break up. A video published overnight on a local Moscow news Telegram channel, which appeared to have been shot across the river from the Kremlin, showed what looked like smoke rising over the Kremlin. According to the text accompanying the video, residents of a nearby apartment building reported hearing bangs and seeing smoke at around 2:30am local time on Wednesday (May 3). It was impossible to independently verify the posted footage.
US regulators seized troubled First Republic Bank, making it the second-largest bank failure in the country's history, and promptly sold all of its deposits and most of its assets to JPMorgan Chase in a bid to end the turmoil that has raised questions about the health of the banking system. It's the third midsize bank to fail in less than two months. The only larger bank failure in US history was Washington Mutual, which collapsed at the height of the 2008 financial crisis and was also taken over by JPMorgan in a similar government-orchestrated deal.
First Republic's 84 branches opened on Monday as branches of JPMorgan Chase, which acquired the bank's $92 billion in deposits and $203 billion in loans and other securities. The bank's shareholders are likely to be wiped out as part of the deal. Jamie Dimon, chairman and CEO of JPMorgan Chase, said in a conference call with both reporters and investors that he believed "this part of this (banking) crisis is over."
At least seven people, including some teachers, were shot dead at a school in Pakistan's north-western Kurram district. Multiple gunmen were involved in the incident, police have said, which occurred in the staffroom of Government High School Tari Mangal. The shooting is thought to have been linked to another earlier in the day, when a man was shot in his car in the district, officials say. The suspects remain on the loose.
The details about exactly what happened at the school in Kurram district - a rural area that borders Afghanistan - are still unclear and police have not identified any clear motive. According to officials, a man was shot and killed in his car in Kurram district this morning. He was believed to be a member of the same school. In retaliation, a group surrounded a school in the small town of Tari Mangal.
The United Nations warned of a growing likelihood the weather phenomenon El Nino will develop in coming months, fuelling higher global temperatures and possibly new heat records. The UN's World Meteorological Organization said it now estimated there was a 60-percent chance that El Nino would develop by the end of July, and an 80-percent chance it would do so by the end of September.
El Nino, which is a naturally occurring climate pattern typically associated with increased heat worldwide, as well as drought in some parts of the world and heavy rains elsewhere, last occurred in 2018-19. Since 2020 though, the world has been hit with an exceptionally long La Nina -- El Nino's cooling opposite -- which ended earlier this year, ceding way to the current neutral conditions. At this stage, there is no indication of the strength or duration of the looming El Nino. The last one was considered very weak.
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