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SPOTLIGHT: SOCCER & THE STATE OF FRANCE

"Everything I know about morality and the obligations of men, I owe it to soccer," French philosopher Albert Camus once said.


And there's definitely more than sports at play in the Euro 2016 soccer championship that kicks off tonight in France: There are heightened security fears around the tournament, which attracts tens of thousands of fans, in a country that has witnessed two major terror attacks in the past year. The very location of the first game — the Stade de France — was actually one of the sites where suicide bombers struck last November.


To top it off, disasters both natural (floods) and manmade (strikes) have crippled the country in past weeks. Last night, French President François Hollande warned potential demonstrators that "the state will take all necessary measures" to ensure the games are not disrupted.


The French, and soccer fans around the world, deserve some cheer. But even soccer, France's greatest love affair, may be tainted. Sylvie Kauffmann, writing in The New York Times, wonders what recent racism allegations in the team mean for French unity, and the role that ethnicity and identity play in the "obligations of men" in a country still reeling from terror attacks.



WHAT TO LOOK FOR TODAY & WEEKEND

  • Final farewell to Muhammad Ali in Louisville, Kentucky.
  • Celebrations of the Queen's 90th birthday in London
  • 70th Annual Tony Awards (Sunday).


KURD MILITANTS CLAIM ISTANBUL ATTACK

The Kurdistan Freedom Falcons (TAK), an offshoot of the Kurdish nationalist militant group PKK, claimed responsibility for the suicide bombing that killed 11 people in central Istanbul on Tuesday. In a statement published on their website, TAK militants warn tourists that "foreigners are not our target, but Turkey is no longer a reliable country for them." Meanwhile, Turkish jets killed up to 10 Kurdish militants in the southeast of the country, Reuters reports, citing military sources.


KUCZYNSKI WINS PERUVIAN CLIFFHANGER

After a week of uncertainty, Peru may finally have a new president. With almost all votes counted, The Peruvian Times reports that former Wall Street investor Pedro Pablo Kuczynski has edged out his rival Keiko Fujimori, although she has yet to concede. Once the result is made official, the winner of the tightest presidential election in Peru in decades will be sworn in on July 28.


— ON THIS DAY

It's already been nine years since what is arguably the best series finale ever aired. Check it out, and more, in today's 57-second shot of History.


BLUE BIRD IN THE DARK

Twitter is doing its best to face yet another data breach after reports earlier this week that a Russian hacker, known as Tessa88, was selling a list of 32 million usernames and passwords. Although the social media site first denied being hacked in a blog post yesterday, it did lock an unspecified number of accounts and asked users to reset their passwords.


NEW MH370 DEBRIS FOUND

A Seattle lawyer looking for parts of Malaysia Airlines flight 370 found new debris on an island in eastern Madagascar, French-language L'Express de Madagascar reports. Plane debris was also found on Australia's remote Kangaroo Island yesterday, according to 7 News. MH370, with 239 people on board, disappeared on March 8, 2014, en route to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur.


— WORLDCRUNCH-TO-GO

Married under Sharia law in their native country, underage refugees raise hard questions for Germany's legal and child welfare system. According to Die Welt's Peter Issig, German courts are divided. ‘Justice officials throughout Germany's 16 federal states have also examined the subject of underage marriages, as the refugee crisis has made this issue more urgent. North Rhine-Westphalia's Minister of Justice, Thomas Kutschaty, said that "in the context of the refugee crisis, it can be noted that the number of married, underage girls, from Syria or other countries, has increased." These married underage refugees accompany their often significantly older husbands or are supposed to join them abroad to start a family.'

Read the full article, Should Refugee Child Marriages Stand In Germany?


VERBATIM

"At some point, the British will realize they have taken the wrong decision. And then we will accept them back one day, if that's what they want," German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaüble said at a Berlin conference, in reference to a possible British exit from the European Union. According to German daily Der Spiegel, Schaüble acknowledged that UK's departure could have dramatic consequences on the EU, including other bloc members following their lead by organizing referendums of their own.


MY GRAND-PERE'S WORLD

At The Crossroads Of Continents — Þingvellir, 2001


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Women attend a pro-government protest in Tehran as tension grows across the country

Chloé Touchard, Lisa Berdet, Sophia Constantino and Anne-Sophie Goninet

👋 Tere!*

Welcome to Monday, where a school shooting in Russia kills at least 13, far-right leader Giorgia Meloni is poised to become Italy’s first female prime minister, and get ready for a superstar comeback at the next Super Bowl half-time show. Meanwhile, Chinese-language digital media The Initium visits the city of Guiyang, where a tragic crash of a bus carrying quarantined residents exposes the darkness of China’s zero-COVID policy.

[*Estonian]

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