Person of the day
Berlin, a home for dissidents
After eight years under alleged house arrest, Liu Xia, the wife of recently deceased Chinese Nobel prize winner Liu Xiaobo, was free and on her way to Germany for medical treatment, sources said. Her husband Liu Xiaobo was a writer and activist who called for political reform in China and, although the Chinese government had said Liu Xia was free to go, her activities were closely monitored. Berlin officials said they were ready to welcome the dissident’s widow in Germany. Earlier this week Chinese Premier Li Keqiang met with Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin. Source:
Quote of the day
Friends and frenemies
That’s what Article 5 of the 1949 document that underpins the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, or NATO, says. As US President Donald Trump makes his way to Europe to attend a NATO summit on Wednesday, everybody else is wondering whether Article 5 still counts. Will Mr. Trump pull out of upcoming military exercises, as he did in South Korea recently? Will he pull US troops out of Germany? Nobody knows. One thing we can guarantee though: Mr. Trump will, once again, berate Germany for not spending enough on defense.
Number of the day
Not those migrants, the other ones
This is the number of Italians who migrated to Germany in 2017, an editorial in Italian daily, Corriere della Sera, pointed out this week. The writer, Federico Fubini, a deputy editor at the newspaper, compared this to the 52,000 migrants who have come to Italy in the last 12 months, about whom local politicians and media are “obsessing.” Rather than focusing so much on them, Mr. Fubini wrote, it was equally important to ask why so many Italians were leaving the country.
Picture of the day
Germany’s third-longest river, the Elbe, is now only 54 centimeters (21 in) deep in places, the shallowest it’s been in decades. Larger vessels have already stopped running and smaller ones, like ferries and tourist boats, have limited room to manoeuver. The cause: Little rain has fallen this summer and groundwater levels have also decreased. Apart from the lost waterborne business, locals also fear the ongoing environmental impact. Source: