Geoff Dyer

The shooting spree inside Canada’s parliament building on Wednesday poses an important political test of the Edward Snowden revelations about government surveillance.

By killing a Canadian soldier and then getting perilously close to the country’s prime minister, Michael Zehaf-Bibeau is sparking a debate in Canada that will have reverberations well beyond the country’s borders. 

 

Europe’s budget wrangles
Gideon Rachman is joined by Peter Spiegel, Brussels bureau chief, and Tony Barber, Europe editor, to discuss the threat that the European Commission will reject the budgets of some of Europe’s biggest nations, in particular France and Italy. Is such a move really possible and what would be the political and economic consequences?

 

Woe betide any nation that offends Rwanda’s dignity. The tiny, tech-savvy east African country abhors what it views as the west’s control of aid for political gain, the double standards it sees operating at the International Criminal Court and any hint of patronising, anti-African or racist sentiment. This sensitivity stems from an anguished past: Rwanda regularly berates the west for abandoning it during the 1994 genocide that killed an estimated 800,000 people within a hundred days.

So who better to fight Africa’s corner when it comes to Ebola

Speaking on television earlier this year, Manuel Valls, the French prime minister, declared that his government’s budget would not be written to “satisfy Brussels”, adding – “We are a great nation . . . France is a sovereign country.”

  • Nigeria has risked its credibility by announcing a deal to free 200 schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram before they are released safely
  • Poland’s lossmaking coal industry, once seen as a bulwark against reliance on Russian energy resources, is in dire need of reform
  • A severe drought in São Paulo is not just affecting Brazil’s coffee and sugar crops, it could also play out in Sunday’s presidential election run-off
  • A weakening currency should mean a boost to exports and inflation, but that theory will be put to the test in the eurozone
  • South Korea’s professional video game competitions, known as ‘e-sports’, are so popular they fill stadiums with 40,000 fans cheering on players

 

The rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant has thrust the plight of the Kurdish people into the spotlight. But who exactly are the Kurds and how will their responses to increasing instability define the future of the Middle Eastern region?

Who are the Kurds?