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DAILY BRIEF

Quartz Daily Brief—Europe Edition—Quartz Daily Brief—Turkey riots, Prague floods, China slows, Wikileaks on trial

By Jake Maxwell Watts

What to watch for today

Turkey burning. Tens of thousands of protesters clashed with heavy-handed riot police for a third night. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan dismissed protesters barricading his office as “bums” and “looters.”

Prague submerging. The Vltava river is likely to burst its banks, threatening much of the city. Two people have already died and hundreds evacuated. Austria, Germany and Switzerland are also bracing for more floods.

Apple on trial. The Department of Justice begins its antitrust court case against Apple, which is accused colluding with book publishers to raise e-book prices. All five of the publishers involved have settled—here’s why Apple’s still fighting.

Manning on trial. If he’s found guilty of passing a trove of government secrets to Wikileaks, Bradley Manning could face life in prison without parole.

EU and Russia talks. Syria will be top of the agenda; other issues will include Iranian nukes, North Korea, and the fee Russia imposed on foreign car makers that looks suspiciously like a trade tariff.

Central bank musical chairs. Stephen Poloz takes over as Bank of Canada governor, replacing Mark Carney, who is moving to the Bank of England in July. Poloz will have to tackle slower economic growth and an overvalued currency.

Over the weekend

China slowed down. HSBC’s purchasing managers’ index showed the first decline in manufacturing in seven months. Official data, which gives heavier weight to state-owned enterprises, posted a slight increase.

Disputed territory stayed that way. A defense ministers’ meeting in Singapore failed to persuade China to engage in multilateral talks over territory in the South and East China Seas, though the US and Chinese delegations made every effort to get chummy.

UBS, tax seducer. The Swiss bank’s French division is being investigated for persuading clients to evade taxes.

Sticky-fingered Lords. Three members of Britain’s upper house of parliament were suspended after a newspaper sting caught them offering to ask parliamentary questions and lobby ministers in return for cash.

Barclays entangled. The British bank has been dragged into the investigation against Costa Rica-based digital currency exchange Liberty Reserve, accused of laundering more than $6 billion in illicit funds. Amid a bitcoin boom, virtual currencies are now in the news for all the wrong reasons (paywall).

Manhattan real estate mega-deals. A Chinese developer and a Brazilian real-estate scion bought a 40% stake in the iconic General Motors Building, and a real-estate/investment consortium bought an office and retail tower near Central Park for $1.3 billion—the biggest commercial property deal in over two years.

China’s counter-surveillance. The Chinese navy started patrols in the 200 nautical mile exclusive economic zones off Guam and Hawaii, in retaliation to the US Navy’s similar tactics.

Quartz obsession interlude

Matt Phillips on why Swedish students have massive debt even though tuition is free. 85% of Swedish students graduate with debt, versus only 50% in the US. Worst of all, new Swedish graduates have the highest debt-to-income ratios of any group of students in the developed world. Why?” Read more here.

Matters of debate

They can’t both be right. The euro zone will recover very gradually this year, says European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi. Oh no it won’t, says the European Commission.

Reassuring markets 101. South African President Jacob Zuma asking the media to “just report nicely on South Africa” doesn’t work.

A startup isn’t a rebellion. It’s just a means to an end.

Overworked? Set these boundaries and reclaim your life.

Don’t be bashful. Stockholm’s startups need to boast more.

The Bill Gates of marijuana? Not so fast.

Surprising discoveries

Homemade hepatitis smoothies. Via frozen berries from Costco.

A journey to Mars is riskier than you thought. The radiation will fry your DNA.

Stomach share and bliss points. The ominous  menu of tasty phrases cooked up by the food industry.

Don’t throw out your scanner just yetJapanese engineers can turn it into a holographic camera.

Commencement gems. The 30 best pieces of unconventional advice for the class of 2013.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, and unconventional words of wisdom to hi@qz.com. You can follow us on Twitter here for updates during the day.

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