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Your Friday Briefing: European Leaders Journey to Ukraine

We’re overlaying European leaders’ vows to again the Ukrainian warfare effort and a Trumpian presidential candidate in Colombia.

The leaders of France, Italy, Germany and Romania met with President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine on Thursday in Kyiv, the place they expressed assist for making Ukraine a candidate for E.U. membership and stated they might proceed to again Ukraine’s navy efforts, regardless of recommendations on the contrary.

President Emmanuel Macron of France and Chancellor Olaf Scholz of Germany, who had been criticized in current days over the notion that they have been in search of to stress Zelensky into peace talks with Russia, emphasised that their assist was real: “We’re and we are going to stay by your facet in the long term to defend your sovereignty, your territorial integrity and your freedom,” Macron stated. “That is our objective, we’ve got no different and we are going to obtain it.”

All 4 leaders expressed assist for Ukraine’s E.U. candidacy, Macron stated. Scholz added that “Ukraine belongs to the European household.”

The European leaders additionally visited Irpin, a Kyiv suburb the place investigators are trying into studies of Russian atrocities throughout the warfare. Russia dismissed their journey as empty symbolism. Dmitri Medvedev, the previous Russian president, derisively referred to as the leaders “European connoisseurs of frogs, liverwurst and pasta.”

Hesitation: Ukrainian officers are cautious of stress to barter an finish to the warfare with Russia due to the 2014 and 2015 Minsk accords, wherein the Ukrainians supplied concessions in change for Russian cease-fires, which by no means held.

Trapped: With the entire bridges connecting the dual Ukrainian cities of Lysychansk and Sievierodonetsk destroyed and preventing nonetheless raging, hundreds of civilians have been left trapped inside one of many deadliest battles of the warfare up to now.

Schoolchildren around the globe have lengthy been taught that Hong Kong was a British colony. However college students in Hong Kong will quickly be instructed a distinct lesson: It wasn’t.

A brand new narrative pushed by Beijing — which rejects how the British noticed their relationship to town — shall be explicitly taught to Hong Kong highschool college students by no less than 4 new textbooks that shall be rolled out within the fall.

The textbook materials remains to be below assessment by principals, academics, students and staff of Hong Kong’s Schooling Bureau, nevertheless it appears destined for school rooms. Native information web sites revealed draft excerpts this week, and The Instances seen academics’ proof copies.

Excerpts from the textbooks reinforce China’s Communist Celebration’s place on Hong Kong. “The British aggression violated the rules of worldwide legislation so its occupation of Hong Kong area mustn’t have been acknowledged as lawful,” learn the academics’ version proof copy of 1 textbook.

Quotable: The narrative, one pro-democracy activist stated, “is a shorthand for saying, ‘Hong Kong was all the time part of China, thus Hong Kongers by no means may declare a proper of self-determination.’”

Broader effort: The fabric is a part of a wider marketing campaign by China’s high chief, Xi Jinping, to overtake Hong Kong’s colleges, to “shield younger minds” and to boost loyal, patriotic residents.

Rodolfo Hernández, a 77-year-old businessman and former mayor, has emerged as Colombia’s most disruptive presidential candidate in many years, electrifying voters — and an enormous TikTok fan base — with a Trump-like “drain the swamp” message.

He’s one in all two remaining candidates in Sunday’s election for president of the nation, the third largest in Latin America, with the winner taking management at a pivotal second within the nation’s historical past.

Hernández has promoted himself as a paragon of democracy, a profitable businessman who makes good on guarantees and cares for the poor. However a Instances reporter traveled to Bucaramanga, a mountain-fringed metropolis the place he constructed his empire and as soon as served as mayor, and located a distinct image: an anti-corruption candidate who has been indicted on corruption expenses, an austerity proponent whose slash-and-burn insurance policies led to a starvation strike by metropolis staff and a development magnate who as soon as pledged to construct 20,000 houses for the poor that by no means materialized.

The opponent: Hernández faces Gustavo Petro, a former insurgent and longtime senator who’s hoping to develop into Colombia’s first leftist president. Their electoral success — they’re roughly tied within the polls — displays an anti-establishment fervor that swept by Latin America as longstanding poverty and inequality intensified throughout the pandemic.

Diablo is likely one of the most profitable online game franchises, from one of many greatest builders on the planet, Blizzard Leisure. However the newest entry within the sequence, “Diablo Immortal,” has acquired overwhelmingly unfavorable critiques from critics who say the sport’s fee mannequin is predatory.

“Diablo Immortal” is free to obtain on computer systems and cellular gadgets, nevertheless it hosts a store wherein gamers can use actual cash to purchase gadgets to enhance their avatar’s gear. These enhancements usually are not assured; gamers are, in essence, paying for a digital scratch-off ticket. By some estimates, it may possibly take hundreds, if not tens of hundreds, of {dollars} to totally improve a personality.

Belgium and the Netherlands is not going to get “Diablo Immortal” because of anti-gambling guidelines that ban these kinds of video games. And on Metacritic, a assessment aggregator, customers have given the PC model of the sport a rating of 0.2 out of 10 — among the many lowest of any Blizzard sport. — German Lopez



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