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Deal or no deal. Donald Trump has issued an ultimatum to his Republican party: pass the Affordable Care Act or be stuck with Obamacare. The president failed to reach a deal with far-right Republicans over his plan to replace his predecessor’s legacy, forcing the delay of Thursday’s vote. The vote will instead take place on Friday but it is far from clear whether the president’s ruse will work. So far Republican party leaders have failed to secure the support they need from fellow party members.
Mr Trump’s insistence on speed over substance is undermining any hope of success for whatever healthcare plan he manages to pass. It is also politically risky — and there are signs of rare self-doubt behind the bravado. (FT)
In the news
Beware of break-up Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the European Commission, has delivered a blunt warning to Donald Trump against encouraging countries to copy Brexit, arguing that a break-up of the EU could trigger war in the western Balkans. According to Mr Junker, the US president’s enthusiasm for Britain’s departure from the EU showed the real estate tycoon was unaware of the complicated history of Europe. (FT)
The road to radicalisation British police are piecing together the path that turned a petty criminal named Adrian Russell into Khalid Masood, the zealot who was responsible for Wednesday’s attack on the Houses of Parliament, after a fourth victim died of his injuries. Nine people are now in custody and one woman has been released on bail. Police say there is no evidence of further threats and tourists in the British capital seemed to shrug off any fears of terrorism. (FT, Guardian)
Island life Japan is trying to shore up the population of 148 remote islands in an attempt to head off new territorial disputes with China and South Korea. The government will legally designate the islands as inhabited border territories next month, with 71 singled out for special help due to their isolation and the severity of their population decline. (FT)
Counter revolution complete Six years after he was overthrown in a revolution that inspired the uprisings across the Arab world, Hosni Mubarak, the former Egyptian president, was freed on Friday after six years in detention, his lawyer said. By contrast, several of the key activists in the 2011 revolution are now in jail and hundreds of others have been forcibly disappeared. (Jazeera)
Can you bee-lieve it The world’s most widely used insecticides would be banned from all fields across Europe under draft regulations from the European Commission. The leaked documents come after a report revealed Bayer and Syngenta teamed up with farmers to get around bee-friendly regulation in Europe. (Guardian, Politico)
Test your knowledge with the week in news quiz. Britain is set to sign a defence pact with which European country?
It’s a big day for
Marine Le Pen The French presidential candidate visits Moscow, where she is being hailed as a realist who opposes globalisation. Ms Le Pen will discuss the fight against terrorism and Russian-French co-operation with Russian lawmakers. (Bloomberg)
Food for thought
The Qatari connection The UK bank faces the conclusion of a criminal probe over rescue deals following the financial crash that have left senior executives facing the possibility of charges. The timing could not be worse. (FT)
Working to death in the gig economy The American obsession with self-reliance makes it more acceptable to applaud an individual for working himself to death than to argue that an individual working himself to death is evidence of a flawed economic system. This is highlighted by the contrast between the gig economy’s rhetoric (everyone is always connecting, having fun, and killing it!) and the conditions that allow it to exist (a lack of dependable employment that pays a living wage). (New Yorker)
Deaths of despair Economic dislocation because of globalisation and automation are behind the epidemic of overdoses, suicides and alcohol-related illness among white Americans with a high-school education or less. The surge in deaths makes them more likely to die early than those who are black or Hispanic, according to research that illustrates the country’s stark social divide. (FT)
How Yahoo Japan cured its ‘big company disease’ Part three of the Nikkei Asian Review series Inside SoftBank explores the rebel who saw the promise of mobile and didn’t want to waste it. (NAR)
‘I only signed up for the frequent flyer miles’ How a British Airways partnership with two dating sites went terribly wrong. (WSJ)
Celibate expectations Pope Francis has suggested he is open to permitting married men to become priests. Celibacy has historically allowed the church to keep priests’ property after their death but with the number of new priests plummeting, allowing marriage might be necessary. (Economist)
Video of the day
The French election process explained The first vote in France’s two-round presidential election will take place on April 23. FT Paris bureau chief Anne-Sylvaine Chassany explains how the country will choose its president and, shortly after, its lower house of parliament. (FT)
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