‘Brexit,’ Lewis Hamilton, Italy: Your Monday Briefing
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Here’s what you need to know:
• The Grenfell Tower fire in London has become a symbol of Britain’s economic and class divides. Our investigation into its causes found a dangerous web of business-friendly politicians and loosened regulation.
The authorities have ordered the evacuation of thousands of people from buildings with the same kind of flammable facade Grenfell Tower had. Some are refusing to leave.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Theresa May’s government today is expected to outline its proposal on what rights E.U. citizens now living in Britain will have after “Brexit.” For some perspective, here are seven of our best articles on the subject.
• In Italy, center-right parties scored victories in runoff local elections, even winning in Genoa, the left’s stronghold. Turnout was low.
Immigration, on the rise again, took center stage, and mainstream parties promised a tougher stance.
Our bureau chief followed campaigning in Como, near the Swiss border. The center-right candidate who called for the removal of economic migrants won.
• President Trump’s refusal to acknowledge Russia’s cyberattacks last year has dismayed fellow Republicans. Some warn that little has been done to safeguard upcoming elections against intrusions.
Washington will spend the week gripped in debate over Senate Republicans’ health care bill, which would undo much of President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act.
• Saudi Arabian security forces thwarted a militant plot in Mecca. A bomber blew himself up, wounding several people.
American commando raids against the Islamic State often target midlevel militants who can provide intelligence on the group’s leadership. Here’s a rare account of one such raid.
Meanwhile, U.S. officials said they did not know whether Russia had killed the group’s best-known leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
• In Turkey, the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, above, has taken the “controversial” concept of evolution out of its high school curriculum.
“The last crumbs of secular scientific education have been removed,” the leader of a teachers’ union said in criticizing the move.
Separately, riot police in Istanbul blocked a gay pride parade that was once a beacon of L.G.B.T.Q. celebrations in the region.
• June pride festivities were held across the world over the weekend. In our latest daily 360 video, join the celebrations in Ireland, Ukraine and China.
Two years ago today, the U.S. Supreme Court made same-sex marriage a nationwide right. We asked gay couples what the ruling meant to them.
In New York City, gay bars are facing an identity crisis as more straight people join the clientele. Some regulars opposed the trend, but we talked to one bar owner who welcomed it: “We can’t reverse-discriminate and say: ‘You’re straight. You can’t come in here.’”
• With unexpected speed, European officials approved a plan to use Italian taxpayer money to protect depositors in two faltering banks in Italy.
• Third Point, a hedge fund run by the activist investor Daniel Loeb, took a $3.5 billion stake in Nestlé, the Swiss conglomerate, and demanded a shake-up.
• An impending trade deal between the European Union and Japan, encompassing a quarter of the world’s economy, would affirm commitments to the Paris climate accord.
• Here’s a snapshot of global markets.
• After an oil tanker overturned in Pakistan, people rushed to collect the gushing fuel. Then the tanker exploded. At least 150 people were killed. [The New York Times]
• Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, backed down on a plan to create space for men and women to pray together at the Western Wall in Jerusalem. [The New York Times]
• In Angola, the president’s family, which includes Africa’s first female billionaire, has amassed extraordinary wealth in a construction boom since the end of the civil war. [The New York Times]
• In Tunisia, a drive to root out corruption has shown surprising vigor. [The New York Times]
• Tens of thousands of demonstrators in Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands demanded the closure of two Belgian nuclear reactors. [Deutsche Welle]
• In Northern Ireland, a guilty plea by a Protestant paramilitary leader could expose past collusion between loyalist terrorists and the British police. [The New York Times]
• Exit polls in Albania suggested that the governing Socialist Party won in parliamentary elections. [Reuters]
• In Bosnia, student protests are challenging ethnic segregation in schools. [RFE/RL]
• We’re introducing a weekly Smarter Living newsletter to deliver tips for a better, more fulfilling life straight to your inbox. Sign up here, and catch up on our latest advice here.
• Recipe of the day: Green goddess dressing makes a zippy marinade for roast chicken.
• Sports roundup: Germany and Chile advanced to the Confederations Cup semifinals. The Formula One rivals Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel clashed bitterly. And Petra Kvitova won her first tennis title since a knife attack.
• Restaurant fare in Dubrovnik, Croatia, is no longer mediocre. The historic city is overflowing with great dining options.
• Martha, a Neapolitan mastiff, won the annual distinction of “World’s Ugliest Dog.” One person described her as “so ugly she’s beautiful.”
• Next month, the Rencontres d’Arles photography festival in southern France will be the first to showcase the work of Audrey Tautou, the actress.
A certain boy wizard was introduced to the world 20 years ago today, when “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” was published in Britain.
The book, about Harry and other students at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, was an immediate hit that just kept growing in popularity. The magic inspired real-world Quidditch teams, book clubs, theme parks and a multibillion-dollar film franchise.
J. K. Rowling wrote “Philosopher’s Stone” in the cafes of Edinburgh, and the hometown paper, The Scotsman, praised her as “a first-rate writer for children.”
(The J. stands for Joanne — Jo to her friends — and the K. for Kathleen, her grandmother’s name. Her publisher was worried that a book by an obviously female author wouldn’t appeal to boys. And her surname is pronounced like “bowling.”)
A year later, the book arrived in the U.S. with a tweak to its title: “Philosopher’s” became “Sorcerer’s” to more clearly convey that it was about magic.
It was a New York Times best seller for weeks before a review on Feb. 14, 1999, called it “a wonderful first novel” by an author who had achieved “something quite special.”
As Albus Dumbledore, one of her characters, once said, words are “our most inexhaustible source of magic.”
Chris Stanford contributed reporting.
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