Hard Numbers: OPEC stands firm, Russia stalking Ukraine, ICC's first Americas probe, Germany's COVID scare
400,000: OPEC and its allies will stick to a previous plan to boost oil production gradually to 400,000 barrels a day, snubbing the US and others who have called on the group to pump a lot more oil amid global shortages and surging gas prices. Joe Biden appealed directly to oil giants Russia and Saudi Arabia, saying their refusal to play ball amid a global crisis "is not right."
90,000: Russia has deployed some 90,000 troops on the border with Ukraine as Moscow ups the pressure on Kyiv, seven years after annexing the Crimea Peninsula. The Ukrainians say that the Kremlin has been adopting an increasingly threatening posture in recent months, while the Kremlin argues it stations its troops "wherever it deems necessary."
100: The International Criminal Court will investigate Venezuelan officials for "crimes against humanity" committed during a crackdown on political protesters in 2017, which resulted in around 100 deaths. Demonstrations erupted after the Maduro-aligned Supreme Court dismissed the National Assembly. It's the ICC's first investigation in the Americas.34,000: Germany recorded 34,000 new COVID cases Thursday, the highest daily caseload on record, though hospital intensive care admissions remain lower than during a spring peak. Meanwhile, the World Health Organization is "gravely concerned" about the pandemic trajectory in Central and Eastern Europe, currently mired in their worst COVID outbreaks to date.