Here’s what you need to know:
• China’s “Great Firewall” — its harsh measures against online dissent and powerful controls on digital information — has been strengthened ahead of the Communist Party congress this week.
But our correspondents found that China’s hard line against fake news, violence and pornography — encouraged by a prescient President Xi Jinping — has created a viable shield. Above, a display of recent cyberattacks in China.
And China’s technology companies appear to be thriving despite blocks on free expression, platforms like Facebook and Twitter, and foreign news, including The New York Times website.
• One of Asia’s most-wanted terrorists, Isnilon Hapilon, was killed in what the Philippine government said was the military push to reclaim the battle-scarred city of Marawi.
He was the leader of Abu Sayyaf, an Islamic State affiliate that he turned into the most violent of the country’s armed Muslim factions. It has controlled parts of Marawi since May. The police provided a photo of Mr. Hapilon, above right, as proof of his death.
A terrorism expert warned of “retaliatory attacks.”
• The White House released President Trump’s itinerary for his November trip to the Asia-Pacific region, focused mostly on seeking more help in the nuclear standoff with North Korea.
He will visit Japan, South Korea, China, Vietnam and the Philippines, where he will meet with President Rodrigo Duterte.
Tensions with the North over U.S.-South Korean naval exercises added scrutiny to a routine military drill that practices evacuating noncombatant Americans out of the South.
• Iraqi government forces swept into the Kurdish-held city of Kirkuk, making good on a threat to use military force to blunt the independence drive by the nation’s Kurds.
In clashes that pit two crucial American allies against each other, government troops seized the vital city and surrounding oil fields, ousting the Kurdish forces who had controlled the region for three years in an effort to build an independent nation.
• While Australia awaits the results of a postal survey on whether same-sex marriage should be legalized, some members of the L.G.B.T. community decided to party.
The soiree was the inaugural Coming Back Out Ball, an event intended to honor older gay, transgender and intersex Australians, many of whom endured decades of discrimination, sexual and physical violence, and forced medical or psychological treatment.
• Finally, astronomers captured images of “the greatest fireworks show in the universe,” the collision of two neutron stars. The cosmic crash-up, which rattled space-time, took place 130 million light years from Earth.
Astronomers around the world scrambled to register the event, a mysterious and long-sought kind of explosion called a kilonova. Above, an artist’s depiction.
• The Weinstein Company, reeling from sex abuse scandals surrounding Harvey Weinstein, said that it had agreed to a financial lifeline from Colony Capital. The investment firm’s chief executive, Thomas Barrack, above, is one of President Trump’s closest outside advisers.
In the News
• Ophelia, the most powerful storm on record in the northeastern Atlantic, weakened but killed one person in Ireland before churning toward Britain. [The New York Times]
• Julian Assange lashed out at Hillary Clinton after she called the WikiLeaks founder “a tool of Russian intelligence” on Australian television. [The Age]
• Jakarta’s new governor was sworn in under pressure to prove that he can be as effective as his predecessor, the jailed politician known as Ahok. [The New York Times]
• Madrid issued a new deadline of Thursday for Catalonia to clarify whether it had declared independence after its leader declined to meet its Monday deadline. [The New York Times]
• A U.S. soldier, Bowe Bergdahl, pleaded guilty to desertion and to endangering the troops sent to search for him after he walked off his base in Afghanistan in 2009. [The New York Times]
• The suona, a traditional Chinese wind instrument like an oboe, was banned in 2016, as part of a crackdown on lavish ceremonies, and may be fading away forever. [Sixth Tone]
• Australia will reintroduce the small, carnivorous eastern quoll to the mainland more than 50 years after the marsupial was wiped out by foxes. [ABC]
• “Chipocalypse”: New Zealand has a severe potato shortage brought on by an extremely wet winter. [New Zealand Herald]
Tips, both new and old, for a more fulfilling life.
• Attempts to create pristine environments for children encourage allergies and asthma.
• Tough workout? Try these 5 cheap(ish) things to speed up recovery.
• Recipe of the day: Pumpkin Bundt cake with a maple brown-butter glaze keeps well at room temperature.
• A side note from a recent trip to North Korea by members of our editorial board: Surprising bursts of personal style offer heartening signs that individual expression has not been entirely obliterated.
• Japan’s remote mountain monasteries are newly popular with visitors who have no religious background. They’re seeking peace, history or just a fleeting connection with the mysticism of another time.
• And one of our most-read reports right now is a love story: They met in a Washington nightclub 12 years ago. He didn’t happen to mention that he’s a real-life prince, and she wasn’t necessarily looking to meet a husband.
The Man Booker Prize, which honors the best novel written in English and published in Britain, will be announced today.
The authors and titles on this year’s shortlist, above, clockwise from top left, are: “4 3 2 1,” by Paul Auster; “History of Wolves,” by Emily Fridlund; “Exit West,” by Mohsin Hamid; “Autumn,” by Ali Smith; “Lincoln in the Bardo,” by George Saunders; and “Elmet,” by Fiona Mozley.
First awarded in 1969, the Booker McConnell Prize was named for the multinational company that established it, as an effort to rival the Prix Goncourt in France. In 2002, sponsorship passed to the Man Group, an investment management firm, which added its name to the title.
The award was initially open only to writers from Britain, Ireland, Zimbabwe and the Commonwealth. Eligibility expanded in 2014 to include any English-language novelist, raising concerns that it would become dominated by Americans. (Since then, one U.S. novel — Paul Beatty’s “The Sellout” — has won. Half of the authors on this year’s shortlist are Americans.)
Winners receive 50,000 pounds, or about $66,000. Howard Jacobson, who won in 2010 for “The Finkler Question,” told The Guardian he was going to spend it on his wife: “Have you seen the price of handbags?”
Sara Aridi contributed reporting.
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