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Europe Edition: London, Ariana Grande, Juventus: Your Monday Briefing

Britain’s main political parties resume campaigning today ahead of the general election on Thursday. Here’s our London bureau chief’s take on the Labour Party’s prospects.

Separately, intelligence officials told us that Salman Abedi, the suicide bomber who killed 22 people in Manchester last month, had met in Libya with members of an Islamic State unit linked to the terrorist attack in Paris in November 2015.

Ariana Grande, whose fans Mr. Abedi targeted, returned to Manchester to perform with a medley of pop stars.



Credit Jawad Jalali/European Pressphoto Agency

• Three explosions struck a funeral service in Kabul, killing at least seven people and injuring dozens on Saturday at the end of a bloody week in Afghanistan.

The new attack comes as Mr. Trump considers whether to send thousands more troops to the country, a decision that also bedeviled the Obama administration. “They are going to be faced with the same questions we were,” a former Obama adviser said. “How and when does this end?”



Credit Alessandro Di Marco/ANSA, via Associated Press

A stampede in Turin, Italy, left more than 1,500 people injured after a loud sound caused panic among the thousands who had gathered to watch a public soccer broadcast. Prosecutors are investigating whether someone intentionally caused alarm.

The match they watched was Turin’s team, Juventus, facing off against Real Madrid in the Champions League finals. Real Madrid won 4-1, becoming the first team to retain the title.

Our correspondent writes that Real Madrid’s series of victories shows that “if you gather enough excellence together, it concentrates, ferments, becomes exponentially more potent.”



Credit Martin Schalk/Getty Images

• Salzburg, the Austrian birthplace of Mozart, has become a mecca for music fans, even though locals often don’t share the visitors’ interest in “The Sound of Music.”

One highlight is the annual Whitsun Festival. This year, Cecilia Bartoli, the Italian mezzo-soprano, took on a male lead role in a Handel opera that was first performed in 1735 by a castrato.

A busy summer of music and theater lies ahead of us. Here’s a look at some of the highlights, from Budapest, Hungary, to Aix-en-Provence, France.




Credit Sam Hodgson for The New York Times

• Vnesheconombank, the bank at the center of a U.S. investigation about possible collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government, is no normal bank. It is wholly owned by the Russian state and intertwined with Russian intelligence.

Apple will show off new products at a developers’ conference today. The most anticipated item is a new voice-controlled speaker that would rival devices by Amazon and Google.

• General Motors is redirecting capital toward a race with Silicon Valley to create self-driving cars.

“Wonder Woman,” the first major superhero movie led by a woman, broke a Hollywood glass ceiling with a giant opening weekend.

Here’s a snapshot of global markets.

In the News


Credit Shabtai Tal/GPO, via Getty Images

• Today marks the 50th anniversary of the start of the brief war in 1967 between Israel and its Arab neighbors. Newly released interviews revealed what one historian called the war’s “last secret”: Israel was ready to detonate an atomic device. [The New York Times]

• Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, as well as transport routes, further deepening a rift over the country’s ties to Iran. [Bloomberg]

• Leaked counterintelligence reports detail Russian efforts to sway popular sentiment in Macedonia. [OCCRP]

• Joseph Muscat, the prime minister of Malta, was re-elected after snap elections were called to counter corruption allegations. [Times of Malta]

In the U.S., we examined the Republican Party’s journey from debating how to combat human-caused climate change to arguing that it does not exist. [The New York Times]

• Bill Cosby, the actor, is facing sexual assault charges in what is perhaps America’s highest-profile celebrity trial since that of O.J. Simpson. The trial begins today and could last two weeks. [The New York Times]

Smarter Living


Credit Paul Rogers

• Switching to healthier fats may do you more good than you realize.

It is really, really hard to admit being wrong. Here’s why.

• If you’re making pizza, try this remarkably good dough.



Credit Ashley Gilbertson for The New York Times

• Nigeria’s afrobeats music scene is booming, but piracy is so ingrained that music thieves worry their rip-offs will be ripped off.

• In Russia, the upcoming movie “Matilda,” which tells the tale of a torrid affair between a ballerina and the future Nicholas II, has the Orthodox faithful fuming.

• Perfectly preserved mummies found in Lithuania are teaching scientists about health and disease hundreds of years ago.

• Paris Open: A new women’s major champion is a certainty. Here is today’s schedule.

• And to mark World Environment Day today, here are some tips on how to be an ecotourist.

Back Story


Credit Tang Chhin Sothy/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Cambodia was awash in political banners, marches and rallies ahead of Sunday’s countrywide elections for local leaders. Buddhist monks even served as political correspondents.

The excitement of millions of voters, high turnout and few reports of irregularities represented a remarkable turn in a nation with a troubled past and a longtime strongman government — though it is far from clear that the turn toward democracy will last.

Each year, The Economist magazine ranks the state of democracy in 167 governments based on five categories: electoral process and pluralism; civil liberties; the functioning of government; political participation; and political culture.

In 2016, the most recent list, Cambodia ranked 112th, just ahead of Myanmar and Iraq. (Norway was first, and North Korea was last.)

In Cambodia, the opposition appeared to be trailing, suggesting another “predictable romp” by the ruling party. That could tighten the grip of Prime Minister Hun Sen, who has been in power since 1985.

But as Sophal Ear, a Cambodian-American political scientist, observed, “At some point, things change whether you want them to or not.”

Charles McDermid contributed reporting.


This briefing was prepared for the European morning. We also have briefings timed for the Australian, Asian and American mornings. You can sign up for these and other Times newsletters here.

Your Morning Briefing is published weekday mornings and updated online.

What would you like to see here? Contact us at europebriefing@nytimes.com.

Correction: June 5, 2017

An earlier version of this briefing misstated the results of an assessment of 167 democracies around the world by The Economist magazine. Norway was ranked first, not Iceland, and Japan was ranked 20th, not 21st.

Source: NYT > World

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