Torture in Syria
As the war in Syria winds down, Anne Barnard writes, the world’s attention to atrocities there is fading, and countries are starting to normalize their relations with Bashar al-Assad. But, far from letting up, the “pace of new arrests, torture and execution is increasing.” For The New York Times, Barnard gives readers a harrowing look inside Syria’s secret torture prisons.
European Parliament elections
More than 370 million people will be eligible to cast their vote in next week’s European Parliament elections, which will take place between May 23 and 26 in the EU’s 28 countries (751 seats are up for grabs). Chris Harris at Euronews has put together an explainer on why the vote is important, how Brexit will affect things, what exactly MEPs do, and more.
Chinese birth rates
For 36 years, in order to regulate birth rates, China’s Communist Party enforced a strict one-child policy. In 2016, the rules were relaxed — China’s population is rapidly aging, and government officials are now actively encouraging parents to have more than one child. But do they actually want to? Anna Fifield reports for The Washington Post.
A changing Arctic
As Arctic ice melts, new corridors are being created, “opening up the once isolated region to more shipping, tourism, mining, and oil exploration,” writes Robbie Gramer. For Foreign Policy, Gramer visits a remote Canadian military base in Resolute Bay, Nunavut, to see firsthand how Western nations are preparing for shifting Arctic geopolitics and increased attention from countries like Russia and China.