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Your Monday Briefing: U.S. Lawmakers Visit Taiwan

Good morning. We’re overlaying a go to by U.S. lawmakers to Taiwan and Salman Rushdie’s highway to restoration.

A delegation of 5 U.S. lawmakers arrived in Taiwan yesterday. Their go to got here lower than two weeks after a contentious journey by Nancy Pelosi, the speaker of the Home, which infuriated Beijing and provoked Chinese language army drills off Taiwan’s coast.

Taiwanese officers mentioned they appreciated the U.S. present of solidarity through the escalating tensions with Beijing. The U.S. delegation deliberate to fulfill in the present day with Tsai Ing-wen, Taiwan’s president, and seek the advice of with the international affairs and nationwide protection committees of Taiwan’s legislature, Taiwan mentioned.

China had no fast response, however the presence of the 5 U.S. lawmakers so quickly after Pelosi’s go to was prone to elicit a pointy response and presumably encourage extra army workout routines, analysts mentioned.

Context: After Pelosi’s go to, Beijing fired 5 missiles into waters which can be a part of Japan’s unique financial zone, a warning to Japan and to the U.S. about coming to Taiwan’s assist within the occasion of a battle there. Final week, China wrapped up live-fire workout routines that encircled the island and simulated a blockade. However Taiwan appeared undeterred, and China went simple on its economic system.

After Salman Rushdie was stabbed roughly 10 occasions on Friday throughout a speech, “the highway to restoration has begun,” his agent mentioned yesterday. Rushdie was taken off a ventilator and will communicate just a few phrases.

A 24-year-old man was charged with tried homicide and assault with a weapon. Prosecutors mentioned the assault was premeditated and focused.

Rushdie has been residing comparatively brazenly after years of a semi-clandestine existence that adopted the publication of his novel “The Satanic Verses,” which fictionalized elements of the lifetime of the Prophet Muhammad. In 1989, about six months after the ebook got here out, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, then the chief of Iran, issued an edict often known as a fatwa that ordered Muslims to kill Rushdie.

Particulars: Due to the assault, the creator might lose an eye fixed, has a broken liver and has severed nerves in his arm, his agent mentioned.

Background: In 1991, the Japanese translator of “The Satanic Verses” was fatally stabbed. The crime stays unsolved. The novel’s Italian translator, its Norwegian writer and a Turkish novelist who printed an excerpt all survived makes an attempt on their lives.


A yr into Taliban rule, Afghanistan has appeared to hurtle backward in time, my colleagues write in an evaluation. For a lot of Afghans — notably ladies in cities — the sense of loss has been devastating.

20 years of U.S.-financed reforms have been reversed by mounting restrictions on each day life, enforced by police-state techniques like door-to-door searches and arbitrary arrests. Faculties and jobs are once more restricted for girls. Music has been banned, and beards are necessary for males — an echo of the Taliban’s first rule within the Nineteen Nineties.

“Now it’s gone — all of it,” mentioned Zakia Zahadat, 24, who used to work in a authorities ministry after she earned a school diploma. She is generally confined to her dwelling as of late, she mentioned. “We now have misplaced the ability to decide on what we wish.”

Worldwide isolation is exacerbating Afghanistan’s financial and humanitarian disaster, which can deepen after U.S. officers accused the Taliban of harboring the chief of Al Qaeda this month. However the nation has been higher off in a method: It’s largely at peace after a long time of struggle that upended the lives of rural Afghans particularly.

Background: Listed here are pictures from the Taliban’s offensive final yr, with context and reflections from our Kabul bureau chief.

Profiles: A gaggle of Afghan staff from our Kabul bureau are adjusting after their evacuation to the U.S. Their new lives are difficult however stuffed with alternatives.

Anime idealizes intimacy and romance, however tends to be notably coy in its depictions of bodily encounters.

A hug, due to this fact, has thus taken on symbolic significance, Maya Phillips writes in a video-filled essay. It usually is a special sort of consummation, particularly when characters embrace as they fall by way of the air.

The photographer Tsukasa Yajima, recognized for his stark, poignant portraits of the previous intercourse slaves for Japan’s troopers in World Warfare II, has gained reward for blowing the whistle on South Korea’s remedy of “consolation ladies.” However it has additionally come at a price.

Lately, he uncovered subpar circumstances at South Korea’s best-known shelter for these survivors, the Home of Sharing, the place he runs its worldwide outreach program. Together with South Korean staff, Yajima uncovered how donations meant for survivors’ welfare have been enriching South Korea’s greatest ​and strongest ​Buddhist order, Jogye.

An investigation by a joint panel of presidency officers and civilian consultants confirmed a lot of the whistle-blowers’ ​accusations and extra, and it result in legal indictments. Offended donors have sued ​the Home of Sharing.

Yajima, a Japanese nationwide, has borne the brunt of a backlash from previous and current shelter staff. The whistle-blowers face dozens of defamation​ and different lawsuits; 4 of them stop final month, complaining about harassment. However Yajima has insisted on staying on​.

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