Daily Briefing

10 things you need to know today: July 5, 2014

Jon Terbush
Brazil's Neymar goes down with an unfortunate fracture Jamie McDonald / Getty Images
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German man accused of spying for U.S.

A German man was arrested this week and accused of passing along classified documents to another nation, which is believed to be the United States. The man, employed by Germany's intelligence service, was allegedly gathering information on a parliamentary investigation into claims of U.S. espionage. The arrest comes after a year of strained relations between Germany and the U.S. over allegations that the NSA spied on German Chancellor Angela Merkel. [The New York Times, BBC]


Brazil's Neymar to miss remainder of World Cup

Brazilian forward Neymar will miss the rest of the World Cup after fracturing a vertebra in his back during Friday's 2-1 win over Colombia. The 22-year-old took a knee to the back from Colombia defender Juan Zuniga late in the second half and had to be carried off the field on a stretcher. Brazil will face Germany, who dispatched France 1-0 on Friday, in the semifinals. [Los Angeles Times]


Maliki vows to continue bid for third term

Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki on Friday rejected calls that he end his bid for a third term as the nation battles an insurgent uprising. "I'll never give up on being the candidate for the premiership," he said in a statement. "Nobody has the right to stand against this." Maliki has faced mounting criticism for his handling of the crisis, and thus mounting calls that he step aside. Though his State of Law party won the April elections, they did not capture enough seats for an outright majority, and parliament has so far failed to form a new government. [Bloomberg, Reuters]


Palestinian boy likely burned alive

A Palestinian boy who was kidnapped and murdered last week had soot in his lungs at the time of death, suggesting he was burned alive, an autopsy revealed. The 16-year-old boy, Muhammad Hussein Abu Khdeir, was snatched early Wednesday morning while waiting to pray and stuffed into a gray Hyundai, according to security camera footage. Though police have yet to identify the assailants, the attack was widely considered retaliation for the abduction and murder of three Israeli teens last month. [The New York Times]


Arthur downgraded to tropical storm

Tropical Storm Arthur weakened as it spun up the east coast and back out to sea Friday night and into Saturday morning. The storm was downgraded from a hurricane early Saturday after battering North Carolina and brushing past parts of the Northeast. The storm knocked out power to tens of thousands in North Carolina and caused heavy rainfall up the coast, but left little serious damage in its wake. [The Boston Globe, USA Today]


Ukrainian troops retake key eastern city

Ukrainian forces recaptured the rebel stronghold of Slovyansk on Saturday, serving a strategic and symbolic blow to separatist militants. Pro-Russian rebels had controlled the city since April as they battled the fledgling government in Kiev. President Petro Poroshenko said separatists fled the city after overnight fighting, and he ordered the Ukrainian flag to be raised above the city. [CNN, Associated Press]


McDaniel to challenge Miss. election results

Chris McDaniel, the Republican candidate who lost a divisive Mississippi GOP primary to incumbent Sen. Thad Cochran last month, said on Friday that he will contest the election's results. McDaniel won the initial round of voting, but fell short in the runoff by about 6,800 votes. The Cochran campaign encouraged black Democrats to cross over and vote for the incumbent in the runoff, triggering accusations from the McDaniel camp that Cochran "race-baited" his way to victory. Cochran staffers said they have found 5,000 voting "irregularities," hence the legal challenge. [CBS, CNN]


Taliban destroy NATO oil tankers in Afghanistan

Taliban militants attacked and destroyed around 200 oil tankers parked outside Kabul on Friday. Insurgents struck the idling tankers — which were reportedly carrying fuel for NATO vehicles — with rockets, setting them ablaze. There were no immediate reports of casualties in the attack. [The Guardian, BBC]


101st Tour de France begins in England

Cycling's most prestigious event, the Tour de France, began Saturday morning in Leeds, England. The 198 riders will race 2,277 miles over the next three weeks before crossing the finish line in Paris. Chris Froome is favored to repeat as champion. [Associated Press]


SiriusXM fires 'Opie & Anthony' host for Twitter rant

SiriusXm on Friday fired Anthony Cumia, co-host of the satellite radio network's Opie & Anthony show, after he went on a racially-charged Twitter rant. Cumia tweeted a string of graphic messages Tuesday about being punched by a woman in Times Square, remarks the network called "abhorrent." [Variety]

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