The World This Week

Maradona, France security law, Ethiopia crisis, US presidential transition


No pandemic was going to keep Argentina from its Evita moment. For hours on Thursday, mourning Argentinians filed past the coffin of Diego Armando Maradona, the rags-to-riches hero, who, thanks to his footballing genius, moved the nation out of the shadows of its generals and defeat in the Falklands War. The rollercoaster fortunes of Maradona, both on and off the pitch, long mirrored that of his country. The outpouring of grief has been massive after Maradona died of a heart attack Wednesday at the age of 60.


They say today's athletes play it too safe, do not use their notoriety enough to speak out. But some, many even, do put their names on the line. French World Cup phenomenon and PSG star Killian Mbappé this week tweeted: "Dirty N-word, beaten by three policemen" with an accompanying statement that concludes with a call to stop racism. The tweet refers to the closed circuit TV footage of a Paris music producer of Ivorian origin being beaten by police. The video discredits the officers’ statement that he struggled and lunged for their weapons. A subsequent video shows police tossing a tear gas canister inside the building from the street.

How are further war crimes prevented? It is more than just a premonition with at least one major massacre documented in Ethiopia. Troops were making their way north towards Tigray this Friday after an ultimatum for the rebel province expired and the prime minister announced an all-out offensive. Tigraeans make up a little over 5 percent of Ethiopia's population, but for decades after the 1991 fall of the Mengistu regime, they held the levers of power. Now, it has come to a head with last year's Nobel peace laureate Abiy Ahmed who is talking of a move on Makele, the regional capital, prompting thousands to flee over the border to Sudan.

Produced by Alessandro Xenos, Juliette Laurain and Laura Burloux.

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