We’re masking the explosive flareup within the Israeli-Palestinian battle and taking a look at why China’s loosening of household planning guidelines hasn’t boosted births.

On the second day of rocket hearth and airstrikes, Israel assassinated a number of commanders of the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas and hinted at a doable floor invasion of Gaza. The militants responded with a brand new barrage of greater than 1,000 rockets fired at cities throughout southern Israel.

Here are the latest updates.

An Israeli navy official mentioned three infantry brigades have been “preparing for a worst-case scenario,” confirming {that a} floor invasion may comply with the bombardment from the air. Israel’s newest operation focused the Qassam Brigades, the navy wing of Hamas and one among a number of Palestinian militant factions energetic in Gaza.

Two days of Israeli strikes have killed no less than 53 Palestinians, together with 14 youngsters, and wounded greater than 300 folks, in accordance with Palestinian well being officers. At least seven folks have been killed and 100 have been injured within the rocket assaults, in accordance with Israeli well being officers. One Israeli was killed by an anti-tank missile close to the Gaza perimeter.

International response: A senior U.S. diplomat is headed to the Middle East to meet with Israeli and Palestinian leaders to induce de-escalation. Tor Wennesland, the United Nations envoy for the Middle East, mentioned that the scenario was “escalating towards a full-scale war.”

The Seychelles received popularity of turning into the world’s most vaccinated nation, relying closely on China’s Sinopharm vaccine in its push to vaccinate greater than 60 p.c of its inhabitants.

But now, a surge in coronavirus cases, together with among the many absolutely vaccinated, is making some query the selection of vaccine. Scientists are warning that growing nations that select to make use of the Chinese vaccines could find yourself lagging behind international locations utilizing vaccines with stronger efficacy numbers. Health officers mentioned that whereas folks have been turning into contaminated, they weren’t getting very sick. Still, residents mentioned the federal government had failed to provide sufficient details about the vaccines.

The scenario within the Indian Ocean island stands in distinction with that of Israel, which has the world’s second-highest vaccination price and the place infections have plummeted with use of the Pfizer vaccine.

Quotable: “You really need to use high-efficacy vaccines to get that economic benefit because otherwise they’re going to be living with the disease long-term,” mentioned Raina MacIntyre, biosecurity skilled on the University of New South Wales in Sydney.

Details: Among the inhabitants that has had two doses, 57 p.c got Sinopharm, whereas 43 p.c got AstraZeneca. Thirty-seven p.c of recent energetic circumstances are people who find themselves absolutely vaccinated, in accordance with the well being ministry, which didn’t say how many individuals amongst them had the Sinopharm shot.

Here are the latest updates and maps of the pandemic.

In different developments:

Slowly, the ruling Communist Party is loosening its long-held restrictions over childbirth. Some native governments have tacitly allowed {couples} to have greater than two youngsters, and a growing number of voices have urged the government to abolish the rules.

A inhabitants census launched this week confirmed a major decline in birthrates, heightening the urgency for these adjustments. But the occasion is cautious of giving up its management, our reporter writes, and has taken a piecemeal method with exemptions in some circumstances.

Context: China’s one-child coverage was in drive from 1980 till 2016, when {couples} have been allowed to have two youngsters. Before they have been unwound, household planning companies corralled girls to be fitted with intrauterine gadgets or coerced them into having abortions. They additionally collected billions in fines yearly from rule breakers.

A working example: The mother and father of Chen Huayun, 33, hid her or despatched her to stick with her grandparents throughout faculty holidays as a result of she was their second baby. As civil servants, her mother and father would have been fired had she been discovered. “It was only when they retired that their colleagues knew that I existed,” she mentioned.

Colombia’s police spent a long time combating left-wing guerrillas and paramilitaries. It was a drive constructed for battle, and now it has discovered a brand new one — on the streets of Colombia’s cities, the place the police stand accused of treating civilian protesters as battlefield enemies.

Achieving day by day targets may be laborious. About a decade in the past, Amitava Kumar assigned a category of school seniors to write down one thing each day — partially to encourage himself to write down.

To succeed, Kumar tried a easy trick: After finishing every day’s activity, he would put the date and a test mark on the pocket book’s closing web page. Somehow, it labored — by the top of the 12 months, he had accomplished a brief e-book.

Today, test marks serve a bigger objective for Kumar. They remind him that he’s a author. “It is the visible symbol of my realization that who I am is defined by what I do,” he writes in The Times Magazine’s letter-of-recommendation feature. And he explains why you would possibly like them, too. “The check mark is more important than whatever comes of the daily work whose completion you’re marking,” he argues. “The first represents actual living; the second, merely a life.”

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