HERE ARE THE TOP STORIES
Taliban leader Mullah Mansour was killed in a drone strike in Pakistan on Saturday.
An Afghan intelligence agency and U.S. President Barack Obama confirmed the news on Sunday. The U.S. says Mansour had been “an obstacle to peace and reconciliation” who was involved with planning attacks that have killed thousands of people. Officials said the Taliban leader had been actively planning attacks on facilities in Kabul and throughout Afghanistan, BuzzFeed News reports.
U.S. elections: The National Rifle Association, the biggest gun rights advocacy group in the U.S., has endorsed Donald Trump for president.
Wayne LaPierre, executive vice president and CEO of the NRA, said Trump offers a new vision for the nation, and lambasted Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama for their stances on gun control.
And Trump gave his first address to a major Hispanic group — you can read the full transcript here.
IN THE NEWS
The U.S. is fully lifting its ban on lethal weapon sales to Vietnam, President Obama said during his Southeast Asia visit. (BuzzFeed News)
At least 17 girls reportedly died after a fire broke out at a dormitory in northern Thailand on Sunday. (BuzzFeed News)
At least 45 people died in a suicide bombing in the Yemeni city of Aden on Monday, security officials say. (The Guardian) And Amnesty International has written to UK Prime Minister David Cameron, calling for a full investigation after it says it found a partially exploded British-made cluster bomb in northern Yemen. (BuzzFeed News)
Austria’s presidential election is too close to call. Norbert Hofer could become Western Europe’s first democratically elected far-right head of state since World War II. (BuzzFeed News)
Entertainment news: British director Ken Loach won Cannes Film Festival’s highest award for the second time. His film I, Daniel Blake focuses on the welfare system. (The Guardian) And Kesha performed a cover of Bob Dylan’s “It Ain’t Me, Babe” at the Billboard Music Awards. The singer has been involved in a legal struggle with producer Dr. Luke, whom she accuses of sexually abusing her. (BuzzFeed News)
South Asia is in the middle of a heatwave. Record-high temperatures have plagued Pakistan and India for weeks and show no sign of ending anytime soon. (BuzzFeed News)
Temperatures soared to 51ºC/124ºF over the past few days in India’s desert state of Rajasthan, where there’ve been at least 16 deaths. Nearly 17,000 villages in 19 of 33 districts there are facing water shortages, the Associated Press reported.
Money Sharma / AFP / Getty Images
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A BUZZFEED Q&A
We spoke to BuzzFeed News’ Albert Samaha about homicides in Chicago.
Shot and killed just shy of his 18th birthday, Deonte Hoard was one of 489 homicide victims in Chicago last year, the city’s highest total since 2012. How this happened — and how it keeps happening — is both one person’s story and the story of how a community has been forced to adjust to murder as an everyday fact of life. Samaha told us more about his reporting:
What do you think is most misunderstood about the homicide numbers in Chicago?
We often discuss the converging socioeconomic factors that have driven Chicago’s murder rate, but we rarely discuss the climate of fear. A lot of the young people who carry guns do so because they’re scared of somebody pulling a gun on them first.
You regularly report on crime and police in America — what feels different about what’s happening in Chicago?
I don’t think anybody can say with certainty why the violence is higher in Chicago, and that's what makes it such a tragic and fascinating place today. A lot of locals blame the city’s long history of corruption for the problems we’re seeing in headlines. It has protected a police department that has brutalized communities for decades, and this has produced a sense of mistrust and disillusionment toward city authorities.
Why did you think Deonte’s story encapsulated what’s happening there?
Because it felt so arbitrary, so random, so unresolved. His life reflected the aspiration so many teenagers have to escape their circumstances. His death reflected the fear so many teenagers must live with and fed the sense of hopelessness some of them succumb to. He was killed while walking to the park to play basketball after school. More than a year later, the police still have not arrested anybody and nobody seems to know for sure the motive behind the killing.
This letter was edited and brought to you by Claire Moses and Brianne O’Brien. You can always reach us here.
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