By Melissa Chan and Katie Reilly
March 17, 2017

Good morning. These are today’s top stories:

President Trump meets with German Chancellor Angela Merkel

Trump will welcome Merkel to the White House today, the first face-to-face meeting between the two world leaders, who disagree on several key issues, including immigration and trade. During his campaign, Trump was outspoken in his criticism of Merkel’s policies, accusing her of “ruining Germany” with her handling of the Syrian refugee crisis. The two are expected to discuss NATO, the conflict in Ukraine and ISIS.

Secretary of State raises possibility of military action against North Korea

In Seoul, South Korea today, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson warned that the U.S. might take pre-emptive military action against North Korea “if they elevate the threat of their weapons program to a level that we believe requires action,” the Associated Press reported. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has said the country is preparing to test an intercontinental ballistic missile that could reach the U.S. Tillerson told a news conference today that “all of the options are on the table,” and he ruled out the possibility of negotiations unless North Korea gives up its weapons of mass destruction.

Scientists expect an unusually warm spring

Federal climate scientists on Thursday said the U.S. should expect spring temperatures that are higher than average — a prediction that follows the sixth warmest winter on record. A region from Texas to New England is likely to experience the hottest temperatures, while areas in the Midwest and parts of California could become more vulnerable to flooding.

St. Patrick’s Day celebrations begin

Today is St. Patrick’s Day, a holiday that many Americans will celebrate by donning the color green, per a tradition that spans centuries. New York City’s parade will march down Fifth Avenue this morning, and businesses across the country are celebrating with shamrock-themed deals.

Also:

Scientists in Britain have received approval to create babies using DNA from three people.

France has banned a hoverboard inventor from taking flight.

A Maryland city is removing a statue of the Supreme Court Justice who said slaves weren’t citizens.

Someone apparently hacked McDonald’s Twitter account and called Trump “disgusting.”

Soon, Saturday Night Live will actually be live in every time zone for the first time in the show’s history.

Chelsea Clinton is writing a children’s book called She Persisted.

The Morning Brief is published Mondays through Fridays. Email Morning Brief writer Melissa Chan at melissa.chan@time.com.

Write to Katie Reilly at Katie.Reilly@time.com.

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