Ukraine shut down a pipeline Wednesday that carries Russian natural gas to homes and industries in Western Europe, while a Kremlin-installed official in a southern region seized by Russian troops said the area will ask Moscow to annex it, the Associated Press reported. The immediate effect of the energy cutoff is likely to be limited, in part because Russia can divert the gas to another pipeline and because Europe relies on a variety of suppliers. But it marked the first time since the start of the war that Ukraine disrupted the flow westward of one of Moscow’s most lucrative exports. Meanwhile, the talk of annexation in Kherson — and Russia’s apparent willingness to consider such a request — raised the possibility that the Kremlin will seek to break off another piece of Ukraine as it tries to salvage an invasion gone awry. Russia annexed Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula in 2014. Read more.