Honduran Gang Truce — Two of Honduras’ most violent gangs plan to begin talks for a truce in the country with the world’s highest murder rate, according to CNN. In separate statements, the Mara Salvatrucha and Calle 18 gangs declared a cease-fire and asked the public to forgive their violence. The Honduran government and the Organization of American States will also participate in the talks to reach a peace agreement. The gangs have already made a deal in neighboring El Salvador, where, according to local officials, the murder rate has dropped significantly.
Paris Stabbing Arrest – Police in France have arrested a 22-year-old man near Paris in connection with the stabbing of a soldier in the capital, reports the BBC. Cedric Cordiez, 23, was stabbed in the neck while he was on patrol with two colleagues in the La Defense district of Paris, on Saturday evening. He has now been released from a military hospital and rejoined his unit. According to the AP, officials said traces of DNA on an orange juice bottle and surveillance video led to the arrest. The attack echoed last Wednesday’s killing of British soldier Lee Rigby in Woolwich, London, although the French authorities have not yet linked the two cases. But French officials have claimed that the Paris stabbing may have been inspired by the Woolwich murder, writes Sky News, with investigators reportedly treating the knifing as terrorism. France is already on high alert following a threat, related to the country’s involvement in Mali, from the North African wing of al-Qaeda, and the heightened alert level is one of the reasons for soldiers being on patrol in central Paris and other high-profile areas, notes the BBC.
Italy Women’s Rights — Italy’s lower house has ratified the Council of Europe Istanbul convention, a treaty that combats violence against women, just days after the brutal murder of a young girl, writes Reuters. On May 24, 16-year-old Fabiana Luzzi’s boyfriend burned her to death, shocking a country that still struggles with persistent machismo, sexism and gender inequality. In the World Economic Forum’s 2012 Gender Gap Report, Italy ranked 80 out of 135 nations. The treaty still needs to be ratified by the Senate for Italy to join Turkey, Albania, Portugal and Montenegro in backing the convention; at least 10 countries need to support the treaty for it to take effect.
Thai Education — The New York Times sheds light on Thai public schools where regimentation based on the country’s military dictatorship of the past emphasizes deference, discipline and unquestioned obedience. Students are required to adhere to a strict dress code and study long hours. Some students and critics, however, say the “mechanistic” education system discourages critical thinking and individuality. The government is also pushing to reform the system and reduce the role of the military in civic life, according to the Times.