Hard Numbers: Xi might go to Saudi, German gas cuts, Ecuador vs. gangs, Norwegian walrus sacrificed
Annie Gugliotta, REUTERS
1: Xi Jinping will reportedly make this week his first trip outside China since early 2020 to Saudi Arabia, where Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman plans to pull out all the stops for the leader of its top oil customer. This comes just a month after US President Joe Biden failed to get any major oil commitments from the Saudis despite making a controversial visit to the kingdom. Beijing, for its part, hasn't confirmed Xi’s trip.

20: Germany's energy regulator says the country must cut natural gas use by 20% to avoid winter rationing. Europe's largest economy will also need to buy more gas from other European countries as well as the US to make up for the likely shortfall in Russian supplies.

5: At least five people were killed and more than a dozen injured in an explosion allegedly carried out by narco mercenaries in Guayaquil, Ecuador's second-largest city. The government has imposed a 30-day state of emergency and labeled the blast a declaration of war by gangs against the state of Ecuador, where drug-fueled violence is rife.

1,300: Authorities in Norway on Sunday killed Freya, a 1,300-pound walrus that had become a local celebrity for jumping on boats and hanging out on piers off the coast of Oslo. Officials said that moving her was too risky and that she posed a risk to human safety, but conservationists — who have been tracking Freya's movements — say they acted too hastily. Walruses have lost some of their habitats in recent years as a result of melting ice caps due to climate change.
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