News in Europe

News in Europe: Happy Birthday, Sir Nicholas Winton!

Citizens, let’s not worry about Ukraine until the third paragraph this week! Unfortunately, the higher-ranking news items are not cheerful at all. Let’s have them anyway.

The victim count after the mine distaster in Soma, Turkey, stands at 301, but the political fallout is still in full swing. Turkey’s prime minister Erdogan has been widely criticised, and one of his aides has gone on “sick leave” after kicking a protester. Meanwhile, 24 people are held on suspicion of negligence.

The other big topic this week is, of course, the European Parliament Election. UK citizens and residents vote today, and I’m not particularly hopeful, reading this. Here’s a short video explaining the election (autoplay warning). And here’s a ridiculous guy in Spain who claims women should not get into real discussions about real subjects. Even if they’re politicians.

Ukraine. No big news this week, ahead of the presidential election on Sunday, but a few interesting thoughts in the media. Here’s how everyone’s economy will be affected, because hey, isn’t that what it’s all about?

There hasn’t been a lot of coverage of the devastating floods in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, and Croatia, although millions of people are affected. In Bosnia, there is a risk of landmines becoming exposed and washed up in unexpected places.

At the War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague, former Bosnian Serb leader Ratko Mladic has opened his defence against charges of genocide. And as expected, he is denying everything. What a despicable man.

Because people never learn, a 27-year-old up-and-coming soprano has been bullied in the media not for her singing, but her weight (surprise!). Slowly though, critical voices are coming through, including right here at Persephone Magazine.

Viktor Sukhodrev, interpreter at U.S.-Russian summits for three decades from 1959, has died in Russia. I link this because: a) it’s not often that translators and interpreters get a mention in the media, and b) they mention Nikita Khrushchev, who’s got the awesomest first name in history (shush, haters).

And lastly, let’s hear it for Sir Nicholas Winton, who is 105! He rescued 669 children from the Nazis and sounds like an all-round good egg. Hip, hip, hooray!

Until next week, with possibly quite depressing election results, but let’s stay positive!

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