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Joanna Kakissis

EVIA, Greece — Long before the fire, Giorgos Anagnostou could see the pine trees were vulnerable.

He spent 20 years tapping those trees in the thyme-scented mountains above his village for resin — his livelihood. Each year, this forest on Greece's second-largest island got drier. Pine needles piled up on that dry earth, creating kindling for summer wildfires that are sometimes set intentionally, to clear land for development.

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Stuck on a stalled motorized inflatable raft in the open sea, 15-year-old Tsedal began to panic.

She and the other passengers, more than 60 migrants from the African countries of Eritrea and Sudan, had set off from neighboring Libya, where their lives had become unbearable. They were trying to cross more than 100 miles of the Mediterranean Sea to reach Europe.

Repeated distress calls brought no help. The passengers were suffering from dehydration and sunstroke. Two babies on board cried with such anguish that Tsedal could feel their wails deep in her chest.

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The European Union began a mass vaccination campaign on Sunday to eventually inoculate some 450 million people in 27 member-states against COVID-19.

Pesti TV is like Hungary's version of BlazeTV, founded by conservative pundit Glenn Beck.

And — like Beck — Pesti TV's creative director, Zsolt Jeszenszky, doubts the result of the U.S. election.

"Too many anomalies," says the chatty, silver-haired former music executive and DJ, giving credence to President Trump's baseless claims of voter fraud.

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Most European leaders are congratulating Joe Biden on Saturday for winning the U.S. presidency. Not Janez Jansa, prime minister of Slovenia, the alpine country in Eastern Europe where Melania Trump was born and raised.

Kosovo President Hashim Thaci, who fought in his country's 1998-1999 war for independence from Serbia, has abruptly resigned after a Hague-based special court confirmed that he's been indicted on war crimes charges.

Speaking at a news conference in the Kosovo capital, Pristina, Thaci said he was stepping down "to protect the integrity of the state."

"I resign as of today," he told reporters on Thursday, urging calm and "political and civic unity."

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A Greek court has sentenced Nikos Michaloliakos, the leader of the far right anti-immigrant Golden Dawn party, to 13 years in prison. Michaloliakos and others from Golden Dawn were found guilty last week of being part of a criminal organization that ordered or encouraged violence.

Other leaders received sentences ranging from five to 13 years on Wednesday. The court will decide soon if any of the sentences will be suspended.

The pastel-painted taverns, cafes and hotels that line the small port in the remote Greek island of Kastellorizo are usually bustling this time of year with tourists, including hundreds of day-trippers from Turkey — which is just a 10-minute speedboat ride away.

This year, the port is quiet, and not just because of the coronavirus pandemic.

This stunning, craggy isle surrounded by the deep-blue Aegean Sea has become a pawn in a dispute between Greece and Turkey — NATO allies and longtime frenemies — over maritime borders and offshore gas and oil exploration rights.

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Ra'ed Alabed films his tent's smoldering remains in what he called the "hell camp" on the Greek island of Lesbos.

"This was my home," says the 45-year-old Syrian refugee in a video he shared with NPR, pointing to a blackened cooking pot and a thicket of charred olive-tree branches. "My home in the most horrible place."

Multiple fires this week destroyed the tents of more than 12,000 refugees living in Europe's largest refugee camp, called Moria after a nearby village. For years, the camp has symbolized the European Union's failure to manage migration in a humane way.

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Several swift fires gutted Europe's largest refugee camp on the Greek island of Lesbos, sending 12,000 asylum-seekers scrambling for emergency shelter.

The camp, named Moria, after a nearby village tucked into olive groves, was already notorious because of its horrific conditions, which included severe overcrowding, poor sanitation and lack of soap and water taps. Asylum-seekers at the camp often lined up for hours for food that was often spoiled.

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Peggy Bouva was at home in the Dutch port city of Rotterdam a couple of years ago when she got a call that fascinated her.

The woman on the phone, Maartje Duin, calling from Amsterdam, said she wanted to talk about slavery. Duin told Bouva that she had done some research into her own family history and found their families shared a connection: One of Duin's ancestors had co-owned a plantation in South America where Bouva's ancestors had been enslaved.

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Rezan al-Ibrahim understands separation. A Web developer who fled the war in Syria and now has asylum in the Netherlands, he's in a long-distance marriage with his wife, Aysha Shedbalkar, an Indian American math teacher, because of the Trump administration's ban on Syrians.

"She had taken this year off work to stay with me in Amsterdam," he says. "Then the pandemic hit."

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