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Morning Briefing: Benedict to become the ‘emeritus pope’

A summary of what you need to know today, compiled by The Globe's news desk on Feb. 26, 2013.

The 'emeritus pope'

Pope Benedict will be called "emeritus pope" and will still be known as "His Holiness" after he abdicates on Thursday, according to Vatican officials. He will also continue to wear his white robes, though he will give up his trademark red leather shoes, according to The Associated Press.

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Italian election uncertainty

With no clear winner, the Italian election has roiled markets in Europe as investors worry that the political gridlock could rekindle euro zone jitters, The Globe's Eric Reguly reports. All major indexes were down in midmorning trading today and Italian borrowing costs are up sharply. For more analysis of the election results, here is Mr. Reguly's report.

Deadly hot air balloon crash in Egypt

A hot air balloon caught fire and crashed into a field in Luxor, Egypt, killing at least 18 foreigners, The Associated Press reports. The crash, which is one of the worst accidents to hit the country's fragile tourism industry, comes as many foreigners appear to be scared off by the continuing fallout from the 2011 uprising.

Rocket fired from Gaza hits Israel

In the first such attack since a truce was reached in November, a rocket fired from Gaza has exploded in Israel today, Reuters reports. No casualties were reported and there was no initial military response from Israel. The attack appears to be a show of solidarity with protests in the West Bank after the death of a Palestinian in an Israeli jail.

More senators face scrutiny

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The Senate's housing expenses scandal may be spreading. Two more senators are being asked to produce documents showing where they live, raising to six the number of senators whose spending has come into question this year, The Globe's Kim Mackrael reports.

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