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The Guardian’s picture editors bring you a selection of photo highlights from around the world

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‘Extremely grave’ crisis in Indian state as 80 dams reach danger levels and more than 60,000 people are displaced

Hundreds of troops led a desperate operation to rescue families trapped by mounting floods in India’s Kerala state on Thursday as the death toll reached 86 with fears for dozens more.

Helicopters airlifted stranded victims from rooftops and dam gates were thrown open as torrential rain brought fresh havoc to the southern state popular with overseas tourists.

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Chelsea and Arsenal promise goals and flaws, Fulham need to tighten up at Spurs and will sparks fly again when Benítez meets Warnock?

With two teams in flux, Chelsea’s derby with Arsenal is a meeting that promises goals. Both sides are vulnerable in defence and dangerous in attack. Although beaten comfortably in the end, Huddersfield exposed Chelsea’s weakness to attacks down the wings last week and Arsenal may aim to do likewise, while David Luiz, in particular, will likely struggle to keep up with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in the middle. But Chelsea’s midfield thrusters – who could include Eden Hazard from the start as well as N’Golo Kanté in all-new Roving Mode – could wreak havoc at the other end, especially if certain Arsenal midfielders remain dozy when it comes to defensive duties. That is something Unai Emery needs to change and he could start by picking Lucas Torreira instead of Granit Xhaka. Or he might consider deploying both in a midfield trio with Mattéo Guendouzi. But even that would probably not be enough to keep Chelsea at bay so Emery will most likely err on the side of adventure and start Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Mesut Özil and Aaron Ramsey in a difficult away assignment. Petr Cech is likely to start in goal at Stamford Bridge but how long can the manager persevere with a keeper less suited to his approach than the new signing Bernd Leno? PD

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For Rose George, menopause has proved far worse than ‘low moods’. It feels like a derangement. And what the hell is it for?

I stare stupidly at it. It’s nothing much to look at. It’s only a small pile of clothing: the shorts and tank top that I wear in bed, which I have thrown on to the floor before getting into the shower. I stare stupidly at the clump because I can’t pick it up. It’s astonishing that I managed to shower, because I know already that this is a bad day, one when I feel assaulted by my hormones, which I picture as small pilots in those huge Star Wars armoured beasts that turn me this way and that, implacable. On this morning, I wake up with fear in my stomach – fear of nothing – and I know it will be a bad day.

For a while, I thought I could predict these days. I have had practice. This is my second menopause: the first was chemically induced seven years ago to treat my endometriosis, a condition that has riddled my insides with adhesions of endometrial tissue, and stuck my organs together. The adhesions are exacerbated by oestrogen; the drug switched it off. (The same drug can block other hormones and is also used to treat paedophilia and prostate cancer.) I hated that menopause. It was a crash off a cliff into sudden insomnia and depression, and a complete eradication of sexual desire. “The symptoms will last six...

Poldark, Instagram and the heatwave have led to a 20% spike in tourists to Cornwall this year. While crucial to the local economy, the crowds are proving overwhelming. Can a balance be found?

On the narrow footpath down to Porthcurno beach, I am conscious of adding to the gridlock. Overcrowding on the Cornish coast has been making the news this week, and as I stop to talk to husband and wife Aiden Fisher, 59, and Lesley Whatley, 60, holidaymakers troop past, laden with backpacks, bodyboards and tote bags stuffed with towels and plastic spades.

“I’ve been coming here since I was a child,” says Fisher, his feet sinking into the sand as he holds his walking boots. “It does seem busier now – and more international, too.”

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Drive to turn around 10 worst-performing jails in England will see £10m spent on security and training

Prisoners are to face a fresh crackdown on drugs, violence and smuggled mobile phones as part of a £10m drive to turn around 10 of the worst-performing jails in England.

Rory Stewart, prisons minister, has announced a package of measures designed to lift standards at the 10 jails, which have “acute” problems, saying the project will pave the way for a “new ethos” across the estate in England and Wales.

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Government urged to rethink ban on vaping in public places and reduce taxes

The government is missing an important opportunity to cut deaths from smoking, says a committee of MPs who are calling for a cut in the tax on e-cigarettes. They are also urging the government to allow more advertising and to rethink the ban on vaping on buses, trains and in other public places.

A hard-hitting report from the all-party select committee on science and technology says the risk to smokers who continue with their habit far outweighs the uncertainty around the possible harms of vaping. Public Health England has said e-cigarettes are 95% safer than smoking.

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Eating a moderate amount of carbohydrates best for healthy lifespan, say researchers

Eating either a low-carb diet or a high-carb diet raises the risk of an early death, according to a major new study which will dismay the many people who have ditched the likes of bread, rice and potatoes for weight loss or health reasons.

Researchers who pooled the results of eight large studies have found that eating a moderate amount of carbohydrates is best for a healthy lifespan. Less than 40% or more than 70% of calories from carbohydrates carried a higher risk of mortality.

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Farmers in Niger are nurturing gao trees to drive Africa’s biggest environmental change

Rain had come to nearby villages, but not yet to Droum in south-east Niger. The sand under its stately trees looked completely barren, but Souley Cheibou, a farmer in his 60s, was not worried. He crooked a finger, fished in the sand, and brought out a millet seed. In a week or two, this seed would germinate and sprout, and soon the whole field would be green.

Cheibou’s peace of mind stemmed from the trees encircling him, which had been standing long before he was born. Despite appearances, these were not any old acacias. They were gao trees – known as winterthorns in English – with unique, seemingly magical powers.

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‘The children kept asking the attendant: Are the bears alive or dead?’

I have always been interested in childhood and play, that unguarded space of imagination and reverie that children access so easily. In the 1990s, I started thinking about how children were engaging with gaming and the internet, which were still embryonic. So when I moved back to Edinburgh from London, I set about exploring how digital learning was being used in schools.

The more time I spent in schools, the more I saw what children were actually doing. One of those things was museum visits – and it was clear that digital culture was greatly affecting museums too. So I spent a year trailing school parties taking guided tours around the Royal Museums of Scotland. I would secrete myself in a corner with my lights – this was in the days before cordless equipment – and shoot large groups quickly, then in post-production isolate single children. Here, you can see a split reflection of two girls in the vitrine, but only one of them actually looking.

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If you don't already own a 'Carrie necklace', chances are you've seen them in music videos, films, fashion shoots – and, of course, in Sex in the City. But the origins and cultural significance of the jewellery goes much deeper than Carrie Bradshaw. Grace Shutti explores the origins of the nameplate necklace, which emerged from black and Hispanic communities in 1970s New York and draws on graffiti and hip-hop culture

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The unmitigated failure of privatised railways is plain for all to see and passengers are the victims

Railways signal the state of a nation. Fast, clean, cheap, punctual trains make a country look well run: Mussolini and Hitler knew the potency of “making the trains run on time”. Any prime minister who puts Chris Grayling in charge, an ideological obsessive who destroys all he touches, is tone deaf to the national pulse.

This week’s train fare rise announcement was political folly on a grand scale, after June’s train timetable fiasco left tens of thousands of trains cancelled. Fares have risen at twice the pace of wages, up 42%, pay up just 18% since 2008, with driver shortages, short trains and customers short-changed by the some of the most expensive fares in the world. A Peterborough to Kings Cross season ticket costs £6,540 a year while in Germany a BahnCard 100 buys a year’s travel anywhere for £3,840. Meanwhile, fuel tax has been frozen for seven years.

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Hawaii is the extinct bird capital of the world. Many native birds are endangered, but for some it's too late. The fabled ʻōʻō (songbird) was last seen in 1985. Set amid the cloud forest of Kauai, Songbird takes you back in time to meet the legendary species and hear its last song.

  • Songbird is available as a 360° interactive virtual reality experience for Daydream and HTC Vive, as a stereoscopic 360° film for Google Cardboard and as a 360° monoscopic film for YouTube. 
  • To view this 360° film of Songbird on mobile you'll need to download the YouTube app for the full 360° experience. If you're viewing this film on desktop you'll need the latest version of your web browser. 
  • To view Songbird on the Daydream platform, download the free Guardian VR app for Daydream and watch with a Daydream View headset and Daydream-ready phone.
  • To view Songbird on Cardboard, download the free Guardian VR app for iOS or Android to your smartphone and watch with a Google Cardboard headset.
  • For more information on the Guardian VR, please go to
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American prospect will be on a British track for the first time in Birmingham on Friday evening and contesting the 100 metres

The king is dead. Long live the king? With Usain Bolt retired, athletics needs a new sprint hero. The brilliant young American Noah Lyles reckons he has the talent and charisma to fill some of the 6ft 5in hole left by the Jamaican.

“I want to transcend the sport,” says Lyles, who runs in Britain for the first time at the Birmingham grand prix on Saturday. “Track and field in America isn’t that big until the Olympics comes around and I want to change that.”

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• Wakefield Trinity 16-36 St Helens
• St Helens reassert 10-point lead at top of league

St Helens withheld a spirited fightback to re-establish their 10-point lead at the Super League summit and move ever closer to a first League Leaders’ Shield in four seasons, ending their own mini-dip in form in the process.

Though this was not quite a performance of the calibre we have seen from the Saints for large periods of this season, by and large it was enough to ensure a first victory in three – which included their shock defeat to Catalans in the Challenge Cup semi-finals – to all-but end the faint play-off hopes of a Wakefield side who have become notoriously tough nuts to crack at home in recent years.

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Farming heritage, rare breed animals, a woodland trail and an honest approach to provenance are all part of this family day out

The Field to Fork story at the revamped working farm at Tatton Park was opened for the summer holidays. The £1.3m attraction, in the grounds of the country estate, aims to reconnect families with where their food comes from by bringing to life Cheshire’s farming history through heritage and hands-on events. Costumed actors bring to life characters from the farm’s past and there’s a mill, maize maze (seasonal) and farm machines to explore, too. The attraction includes a rare-breeds farm, play barn and woodland trail for little ones, plus visitors can swot up on agricultural skills, such as cheese-making and beekeeping. The Tatton estate also has a stately home, gardens and a deer park.

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Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster follower denied right to wear colander in ID photos

The Dutch council of state has ruled that Pastafarianism is not a religion, denying a follower of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster the right to wear a colander on her head in her passport and driving licence photo.

Mienke de Wilde is now considering taking her case to the European court of human rights.

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In a country where violence against gay people is often excused on grounds of unjust provocation, the fatal shooting of a trans woman has caused renewed fear

Simge Avcı loved practical jokes, says her roommate Bahar, recalling how her friend would giggle after pretending to spill the contents of an empty teapot on her startled victims.

Bahar (not her real name), 25, had lived with Avcı for seven years in Samsun, a small, sleepy city on the Black Sea coast of Turkey.

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Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta takes 67% of vote in runoff, but disillusioned voters stay away

Mali’s president, Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta, has won a second term after taking 67% of the vote in a runoff election.

Opposition leader Soumaïla Cissé received more than 32% of the vote in Sunday’s poll.

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Why is heritage so important? This documentary explores that question by following two women trying to find the families who gave them up for adoption

The reason 26-year-old Ria wants to meet her birth mother, she says, is to “find out if I was brought into this world with love”. Searching for Mum: Sri Lanka (BBC Two) follows two women through the emotional and draining process of attempting to track down the families who gave them up for adoption in a country far away from the one in which they grew up. It is as frustrating as it is moving, touching on a wider scandal about enforced adoptions in Sri Lanka and the use of falsified documents to cover up coercion. It is also an honest and brave story about what it means to know one’s roots, and a complex examination of why many people consider this an essential part of their being.

Ria’s story is the more straightforward, if only in comparison to the one with which it is paired. She has lived with her adoptive parents in Inverness since she was three weeks old. “I stuck out like a sore thumb, but I was completely happy,” she says of her childhood. Nevertheless, not knowing why she was given up for adoption has needled her, as has the paperwork that says her birth mother wants no contact. Articulate, thoughtful and wary, Ria explains that she feels stuck between two countries and two identities: “It doesn’t necessarily upset me,...