Good morning. We’re covering the fallout from Russian atrocities in Bucha, the end of Carrie Lam’s tenure as Hong Kong’s leader and Pakistan’s political crisis.
Rising calls to punish Russia
President Biden called the indiscriminate civilian deaths in Bucha a “war crime” and said the U.S. would impose additional sanctions on Russia. Some European leaders also demanded tougher sanctions, including a total ban on Russian fuel imports. Here are the latest updates.
Moscow has denied that its soldiers had anything to do with the atrocities, which have come to light as Russian forces retreat from Kyiv. The Kremlin accused the West of fabricating evidence of the killings, and Russian officials said anyone attributing them to their country’s actions could face prosecution.
But a review of satellite images and videos by The Times shows that many of the civilians were killed more than three weeks ago, when Russia’s military controlled the town. There were bodies in the streets as early as March 11, well before Russia says it “withdrew completely” from the town.
Bucha: A mass grave filled up in the small town north of Kyiv after the morgue, forced to operate without electricity, became intolerable. “They shot everyone they saw,” a woman said.
Response: Germany, France and Lithuania are expelling Russian diplomats. The U.S. ambassador to the U.N. said that America and its allies would seek to suspend Russia from the U.N. Human Rights Council.
China: The Communist Party is mounting an ideological campaign to build popular support for Russia.
State of the war:
Carrie Lam’s tenure will end
On Monday, Carrie Lam announced that she would not seek a second term as the leader of Hong Kong. Lam, 64, cited family reasons, but critics said the final straw was her failure to guide the city through a Covid outbreak that killed more than 8,000 people in two months.
Under Lam’s watch, citywide protests deepened political divisions. A national security law silenced a once-vibrant civil society. And restrictive pandemic policies threatened Hong Kong’s status as Asia’s world city.
With each crisis, Lam tried to serve the will of Beijing, which controls the territory. Critics say she oversaw a systemic backslide of personal liberties, further isolating Hong Kong from an international community leery of China’s growing authoritarian grip.
No ruling on no-confidence
Pakistan’s Supreme Court adjourned Monday after a hearing on whether lawmakers can hold a no-confidence vote regarding Prime Minister Imran Khan.
April 4, 2022, 5:41 p.m. ET
On Sunday, Khan dissolved Parliament and called for new elections after he and his allies blocked the vote that was widely expected to remove him from office.
The justices are expected to issue a verdict in the coming days. There are three possible outcomes:
The court could order the vote of no confidence, jeopardizing Khan’s hold on power.
The court could rule that Khan’s move was unconstitutional but opt not to restore the dissolved Parliament or allow the vote to move forward.
The court could decline to interfere, effectively upholding Khan’s actions and paving the way for early elections.
Details: Many constitutional experts believe the court will rule against Khan. But the verdict is far from certain.
Maneuvering: On Monday, Khan appeared to push ahead with his plans to hold early elections: He took steps to establish an interim government and called for a protest in the capital, Islamabad.
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A Grammy’s recap
The 64th annual music awards shone with glitz and youthful glam.
Jon Batiste, the New Orleans jazz scion and late-night bandleader, won album of the year. Silk Sonic — the retro soul-funk project of Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak — took home awards for both best record and best song. And Olivia Rodrigo won best pop vocal album and best new artist. Check out the full list of winners.
The awards also included geopolitical maneuvering: President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine delivered an impassioned plea for help in a recorded video.
Fashion flourished, too: “If there was a theme to the night, it was an exuberant anything-goes attitude that was not a bad reminder of why red carpets are fun in the first place,” our chief fashion critic writes.
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That’s it for today’s briefing. See you next time. — Amelia
P.S. Our China team is changing: Keith Bradsher will become our Beijing bureau chief, to be joined there by Vivian Wang. Alexandra Stevenson will move to China as our new Shanghai bureau chief and Daisuke Wakabayashi will relocate to Seoul.
The latest episode of “The Daily” is about Donald Trump and the 2020 election.
You can reach Amelia and the team at [email protected].