GREXIT AVERTED, TSIPRAS IN TROUBLE AT HOME
After a 15-hour negotiation that represented the longest European summit meeting in history, Greece and its EU partners finally reached a unanimous agreement to avoid a â€œGrexitâ€ and keep the euro in Greece. European Council President Donald Tusk announced the success of the marathon negotiations this morning in Brussels, stressing that financial support for Greece will come in exchange for serious reforms. Facing a potential political crisis at home despite sparing his country a bank collapse, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras welcomed the deal but admitted that implementing the reforms will be tough.
- Italian daily La Stampa reports that Athens secured negotiations for a new three-year bailout program and a 50-billion-euro investment fund in exchange for stringent fiscal reforms. The investment fund will be based in Greece, a victory for Tsipras, and half of it will go towards recapitalizing Greek banks, which otherwise would have run out of money today.
- But according to Madrid-based El Pais, many members of Tsiprasâ€™ own Syriza party oppose the plan, which includes pension reforms, increases in VAT, and privatizations. Coalition partners are also opposed. Tsipras could lose his majority, causing his administration to collapse and raising the specter of a â€œnational unityâ€ government with the pro-European opposition.
- The deal, which includes financing from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), also allows Greece to delay repayment of its debt and must be approved by the parliaments of all Eurozone members, French daily Le Monde reports.
- A Syriza spokesperson called the agreement â€œa coup,â€ and analysts said the government was effectively accepting harsher terms than those rejected in last Sundayâ€™s referendum, but Tsipras insisted he had obtained his goals of debt restructuring and a financing plan. French financial paper Les Echos writes that the new measures will worsen the Greek recession but represent a compromise between the hardline â€œpro-Grexitâ€ stances of several Eurozone members and the demands of the Syriza administration.
â€œEL CHAPOâ€ ESCAPES
The Mexican drug lord and cartel leader known as â€œEl Chapoâ€ Guzman escaped yesterday for the second time from a Âmaximum-security prison via a hole dug in his shower area that led to a mile-long tunnel. Read more about it in our Extra! feature here.
IRAN ANNOUNCEMENT IMMINENT
A deal on Iranâ€™s nuclear program could be announced today, as negotiators in Vienna reached their seventeenth straight day of talks. Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi arrived in Vienna, indicating an agreement is imminent, but officials on both sides maintained that difficult issues remained to be solved. Ali Akbar Salehi, one of the leading Iranian negotiators and head of the countryâ€™s atomic energy agency, sounded a more optimistic tone, saying â€œthe technical issues are almost settled,â€ Iranian news agency Tasnim reports.
Photo: Han Yan/Xinhua/ZUMA
Novak Djokovic cemented his place as No. 1 in menâ€™s tennis after a thrilling 7-6, 6-7, 6-4, 6-3 victory over Roger Federer in yesterdayâ€™s Wimbledon final. Serena Williams easily dispatched the 21-year old Garbine Muguruza 6-4, 6-4 in the womenâ€™s final Saturday, clinching her sixth Wimbledon title.
CEASEFIRE IN COLOMBIA
After weeks of intensifying clashes despite continuing peace talks in Cuba, the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) rebel group announced a ceasefire last night. In a televised address to the nation, President Juan Manuel Santos hailed the move as a step forward but emphasized that the armed forces are only â€œde-escalating,â€ warning that the government will re-evaluate the negotiations four months from now if further progress isnâ€™t made, Colombian daily El Espectador reports.
Nintendo President and CEO Satoru Iwata died Saturday at age 55, due to a bile duct growth, the Japanese video game maker announced Sunday.
IRAQ OFFENSIVE BEGINS
Aided by Shia militias, the Iraqi army launched an operation to retake the western province of Anbar from ISIS militants who captured it in May. Reuters reports that the offensive began early in the morning in Baghdad time, with heavy bombardment of Ramadi and Fallujah, the provinceâ€™s two main cities. Al Jazeera reports that 5,000 troops have been mobilized, and their first objective is to recapture the city of Fallujah.
MY GRAND-PÈREâ€™S WORLD
POPEâ€™S VISIT ENDS
Massive crowds gathered to see Pope Francis perform mass in the Paraguayan capital of Asuncion, the final appearance of his nine-day trip to South America. A day after visiting a slum outside the capital, the pontiff continued his critique of global capitalism that has been the hallmark of his Latin American visit, urging Catholics to â€œembrace hospitalityâ€ and â€œreject selfishness,â€ the BBC reports.
Le Mondeâ€™s Allan Kaval traveled to Qamishli, the city in northeast Syria regarded as the capital of Syrian Kurdistan. â€œBehind the apparent confusion is a society still very much at war, where might makes right and the blood of martyrs has become the key to achieving legitimacy and rising in the new social order,â€ Kaval writes. â€œQamishliâ€™s streets are lined with the portraits of Kurdish men who lost their lives in the struggle against ISIS and the regime, a constant reminder of the war that transforms every city block into a symbol of conquest and victory.â€
Read the full article, Welcome To Qamishli, The Phantom Capital Of Syrian Kurdistan.
YET ANOTHER GOP CANDIDATE
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has entered the presidential race, becoming the 15th major candidate to announce a bid for the Republican nomination. In the announcement expand=1] video posted today, Walker pledged to â€œfight and win for the American people.â€ A formal speech to mark the opening of his campaign is scheduled for later today in his home state of Wisconsin.
ON THIS DAY
Han Solo, Rick Deckard, Indiana Jones â€" all were technically born on this day, 73 years ago! Check out todayâ€™s 57-second shot of history.
Welcome to Tuesday, where violence erupts after Sudan's military coup, Australia finally gets onboard with climate change goals, and Harrison Ford stars in Raiders of the Lost Credit Card. From Bogota, we also see what the capture of drug kingpin Otoniel means for Colombia, a country long stained by cocaine trafficking.
[*Nĭhǎo - Mandarin Chinese]
Saving the planet is really a question of dopamine
The elite of the ecologically minded are set to descend on Glasgow next week for the Cop 26 conference on climate change. But beyond debating policy prescriptions, French daily Les Echos explores the role our own brains have on making the right choices for the planet:
Almost every week, a new scientific study alerts us to the degradation of the environment. And yet, we continue not to change anything fundamental in our systems of production and habits of consumption. Are we all suffering from blindness, or poisoned by denial?
In his popular books Le Bug humain (The Human Bug) and Où est le sens? (Where is the Sense?), Sébastien Bohler, a journalist in neuroscience and psychology, provides a much more rational explanation: The mechanism responsible for our propensity to destroy our natural environment is in fact a small, very deep and very primitive structure of our brain called the striatum.
This regulator of human motivation seems to have been programmed to favor behaviors that ensure the survival of the species.
Since the dawn of humanity, gathering information about our environment, feeding ourselves, ensuring the transmission of our genes through sexual intercourse and asserting our social status have all been rewarded with a shot of dopamine, the "pleasure hormone."
Nothing has changed since then; except that, in our society of excess, there is no limit to the satisfaction of these needs. This leads to the overconsumption of food and addictions to everything from sex to social media — which together account for much of the world's destructive agricultural and energy practices.
No matter how much we realize that this is leading to our downfall, we can't help but relapse because we are prisoners of the dopamine pump in the striatum, which cannot be switched off.
According to Bohler, the only way out is to encourage the emergence of new values of sobriety, altruism and slowness. If adopted, these more sustainable notions could be recognized by the striatum as new sources of dopamine reward. But there's the challenge of promoting inspiring stories that infuse them with value.
Take the photo-collage exhibition "J'agis ici... et je m'y colle" ("I'm taking action here... and I'm sticking to it"), a collection of life-size portraits of residents committed to the energy transition, displayed on the walls of the French coastal city of La Rochelle.
Backed by the French National Center for Street Arts, photographer Martin Charpentier may be employing artistic techniques, but he's also tinkering with neuroscience in the process.
— Stefano Lupieri / Les Echos
• Sudan in chaos following military coup: After Sudan's military seized power from the transitional government, defiant anti-coup protesters have returned to the streets of the capital city Khartoum, for a second consecutive day. At least seven people have been killed and 140 injured. Coup leader General Al-Burhan has announced a state of emergency across the country, while the military cut off access to the internet and closed roads, bridges, and Khartoum's airport. Washington condemned the coup and suspended aid, and the U.N. Security Council was expected to discuss Sudan behind closed doors later today.
• Egypt lifts state of emergency in force since 2017: Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, announced the end of a four-year-old state of emergency, undoing powers that had given the government sweeping authority to quash protests, make arrests, search people's homes without warrants, and control everyday life in the most populous Arab country.
• Platforms take down Bolsonaro video linking vaccine and AIDS: Facebook, Instagram and YouTube have removed an anti-vaccine video from their respective platforms posted by Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro. Beyond blocking the video, in which Bolsonaro falsely linked the COVID-19 vaccine with developing AIDS, YouTube went further and suspended the far-right leader for a week.
• COVID update: The U.S. will launch a new travel system on November 8, imposing new vaccine requirements for most foreign national travellers and lifting severe travel restrictions over China, India and much of Europe. Meanwhile, authorities in northern China are reimposing lockdown, and other emergency measures as COVID-19 infections spread to 11 provinces.
• Australia pledges net zero emissions by 2050: As one of the world's largest emitters of greenhouse gases per capita and a major exporter of fossil fuels such as coal, Australia has finally committed to becoming carbon-neutral by 2050. This is a target already adopted by most nations heading to next week's COP26 international climate conference, but that Australia had so far refused to pledge.
• Japanese princess loses royal status over wedding: Japan's Princess Mako married her boyfriend Kei Komuro, giving up her royal status. Under Japanese law, female imperial family members lose their status upon marriage to a "commoner" although male members do not.
• Raiders of the Lost Credit Card: A tourist returned the credit card of American actor Harrison Ford, who had lost it in Sicily while shooting scenes for the latest Indiana Jones movie.
"Out of control," titles German daily Süddeutsche Zeitung, reporting on the release of a series of articles by a consortium of 17 U.S. news outlets, called the "Facebook Papers," that reinforce whistleblower Frances Haugen's claims that the social media giant is prioritizing profits over the well being of its users and society.
After striking a deal to sell 100,000 electric vehicles to car rental firm Hertz, Elon Musk's Tesla has joined Apple, Microsoft, Amazon and Google's Alphabet in the club of companies that have reached a $1 trillion valuation.
What the capture of a drug kingpin means for Colombia
While the capture of Otoniel, Colombia's most wanted drug trafficker, made global headlines, Bogotá daily El Espectador writes about the significance of the news for a country that has battled narcotrafficking for decades.
👮 The arrest of the Colombian mobster Dairo Antonio Úsuga David, a.k.a. "Otoniel," is a victory for Colombian intelligence, law-and-order forces and the broader fight against crime. Details of the eight-year-long pursuit of the head of the Gulf Clan, of the tireless and meticulous work, testify to the capabilities that the police and army have managed to develop in the fight against the narco-trafficking that has long been a stain on Colombia.
🇨🇴🇲🇽 Otoniel is responsible for a criminal organization with more than 3,800 members and influence on 12 departments and 128 districts in Colombia (though data from the Bogotá-based Peace and Reconciliation Foundation counts 211 districts). The Gulf Clan sends half the drugs going out of Colombia, and is the main exporter to Mexico. Its ties to the Mexican cartel chief Joaquín "el Chapo" Guzmán are well-documented — and Otoniel had aspired to fill the power vacuum left by Guzmán's capture.
⚖️ Some have observed that the ensuing power vacuum will engender more violence, which is true. But we are, in any case, far from eliminating drug trafficking in Colombia or cutting its tentacles across public life. That shows the limitations of the hard-line response to drugs, when we have seen it is not enough. Still, it is essential in any fight against crime for the state to show its operational capabilities. The message is clear: not even drug overlords are above the law in Colombia.
➡️ Read more on Worldcrunch.com
"I love Mako. I would like to spend my one life with the person I love."
— Kei Komuro said during a news conference after his wedding with Japan's Princess Mako, the niece of the current emperor and the sister of the likely future sovereign. The princess lost her royal status as a result of her marriage with Komuro, a "commoner."
An art installation "Greetings From Giza" by French artist and photographer JR faces the pyramids of Giza in Egypt, as part of the 2021 exhibition "'Forever Is Now," the first international art exhibition to take place there — Photo: Balkis Press/Abaca/ZUMA
✍️ Newsletter by Anne-Sophie Goninet, Jane Herbelin and Bertrand Hauger
Send all commoner and royal well wishes to Mako and Kei — and let us know what the news looks like from your corner of the world! firstname.lastname@example.org