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blog

Euro 2016 Kicks Off, Peru Suspense, Periodic Table Update

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 SchaĂĽble said at a Berlin conference, in reference to a possible British exit from the European Union. According to German daily Der Spiegel, SchaĂĽble 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


— MORE STORIES, EXCLUSIVELY IN ENGLISH BY WORLDCRUNCH

ADD FOUR CHAIRS TO THE PERIODIC TABLE

Enter nihonium, moscovium, tennessine, and oganesson.

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Geopolitics

The Trudeau-Modi Row Reveals Growing Right-Wing Bent Of India's Diaspora

Western governments will not be oblivious to the growing right-wing activism among the diaspora and the efforts of the BJP and Narendra Modi's government to harness that energy for political support and stave off criticism of India.

The Trudeau-Modi Row Reveals Growing Right-Wing Bent Of India's Diaspora

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the G20 Summit in New Delhi on Sept. 9

Sushil Aaron

-Analysis-

NEW DELHI — Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has brought Narendra Modi’s exuberant post-G20 atmospherics to a halt by alleging in parliament that agents of the Indian government were involved in the murder of Hardeep Singh Nijjar, a Canadian national, in June this year.

“Any involvement of a foreign government in the killing of a Canadian citizen on Canadian soil is an unacceptable violation of our sovereignty,” Trudeau said. The Canadian foreign ministry subsequently expelled an Indian diplomat, who was identified as the head of the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), India’s foreign intelligence agency, in Canada. [On Thursday, India retaliated through its visa processing center in Canada, which suspended services until further notice over “operational reasons.”]

Trudeau’s announcement was immediately picked up by the international media and generated quite a ripple across social media. This is big because the Canadians have accused the Indian government – not any private vigilante group or organisation – of murder in a foreign land.

Trudeau and Canadian state services seem to have taken this as seriously as the UK did when the Russian émigré Alexander Litvinenko was killed, allegedly on orders of the Kremlin. It is extraordinarily rare for a Western democracy to expel a diplomat from another democracy on these grounds.

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