Politics this week
Alexander Van der Bellen, a former head of the Green party, won Austria's presidential election by just 31,000 votes, defeating Norbert Hofer of the Freedom Party. Had he won this post, Mr. Hofer would have been the first far-right head of state in the European Union. His surprisingly high support reflected voter anger over immigration. As in several European countries, the far right has been making ground.
In Brussels Greece's creditors agreed on a deal to secure debt relief for the country. The measures, which were thrashed out in late-night talks after months of wrangling, are intended to restructure Greek debt, which is currently 180% of GDP. Greece will receive 10 billion ($11billion) in aid to help it avoid a default, starting with 7.5 billion next month.
After being detained in Russia for two years Nadia Savchenko, a Ukrainian pilot, was released from jail and sent home. She was exchanged for two Russian prisoners captured in Ukraine. On her return home Ms Savchenko ironically thanked those who had “wished me evil”, and was greeted as a national hero.
In Turkey Binali Yildirim was sworn in as prime minister following the ouster of his predecessor, Ahmet Davutoglu. Mr. Yildirim is a loyal supporter of Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the president, and vowed to continue with an overhaul of the constitution which is handing more powers to the presidency.
Romero Jucá, Brazil's planning minister, stepped aside after tapes were leaked in which he appeared to suggest that the impeachment of the president, Dilma Rousseff, would blunt an investigation into the multibillion- dollar scandal centered on Petrobras, the state-controlled oil company. Mr Jucá, one of the targets of the investigation, says his remarks were misinterpreted. He was only recently appointed by the interim president, Michel Temer. The new government proposed several reform measures, including a cap on the growth of public spending.