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Samantha Simmons with Nester, aged 12 months, and Alex, nine. ‘We were just sleeping all over the place’
For many tenants, private rents are too high to afford without the support of housing benefit
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According to the CIA’s secret travel guide for spies, travellers with 'shaking or trembling hands, rapid breathing for no apparent reason, cold sweats, pulsating carotid arteries, a flushed face, and avoidance of eye contact' will arouse suspicion
Leaked document is full of good advice for frequent fliers
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Verbal lashing comes during traditional Christmas greeting
Voices
Chelsea Pensioners meet residents of Veterans Aid’s hostel, New Belvedere House, in east London
Homeless Veterans: 'I can’t give money, but I can give time'
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It's not immediately clear if the Internet connectivity problems were an act of retribution for a major intrusion at Sony Pictures Entertainment that the FBI last week linked to North Korea
Outage could be latest response in ongoing cyber-attacks
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Eleven people were hurt, five seriously, when a van drove into a Christmas market in France
French officials warn against jumping to conclusions after weekend attacks
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Man who says he has had a life-long fixation with women’s lingerie accessed neighbours' apartments with master key
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This 2010 booking photo provided by the Fulton County, Ga. Sheriff's office shows Ismaaiyl Brinsley after he was arrested on charges of terroristic threats, simple battery and marijuana possession
Shakwura Dabre offers condolences to families of murdered patrolmen
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'No hesitation' in expelling Thanet councillor Rozanne Duncan
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Jonny Benjamin, who launched the 'Finding Mike' campaign to track down the man who saved his life
His illness worsened
Voices
Mary Christmas: the Bethlehem story is Mary's moment, when a poor peasant girl gives birth to the Son of God in a stable
VOICES Peter Stanford on the appeal of the Virgin Mary - and how movie-makers missed their slot
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It could destroy clues to monument's origins, they say
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The Taliban fighters who stormed a military-run school in Peshawar, Pakistan on Tuesday, in an image released by the Pakistani Taliban
Officials say the attack 'finally brought them to the gallows'
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Labour MP John Mann has named 22 politicians as suspected child sex abusers
Labour MP John Mann has asked police to investigate two suspicious deaths amid continuing claims of a cover-up

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fashionOne man takes the hipster trend to the next level
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A referee issues a red card
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Approaching sale shopping in a smart way means that you’ll get the most out of your money
life + styleSales shopping tips and tricks from the experts
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newsIt was due to be auctioned off for charity
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Coca-Cola has become one of the largest companies in the world to push staff towards switching off their voicemails, in a move intended to streamline operations and boost productivity
peopleCoca-Cola staff urged to switch it off to boost productivity
Environment
Sir David Attenborough
environment... as well as a plant and a spider
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'That's the legal bit done. Now on to the ceremony!'
voicesThe fight for marriage equality isn't over yet, says Siobhan Fenton
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Bianca Miller and Katie Bulmer-Cooke are scrutinised by Lord Sugar's aide Nick Hewer on The Apprentice final
tvBut Bianca Miller has taken on board his comments over pricing
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in picturesWounded and mangy husky puppy rescued from dump
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John Rees-Evans is standing for Ukip in Cardiff South and Penarth
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i100Local paper on botched Ukip ad
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Darrell Banks’s ‘Open The Door To Your Heart’
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Bad policy, good politics: Ed Balls’s determination to impose his mansion tax as soon as he can puts the Conservatives in a bind

“The religion of socialism is the language of priorities,” said Nye Bevan, Labour saint and creator of the National Health Service. Now we have discovered the principal priority of one of his heirs, Ed Balls; taxing the homes of the rich. The shadow Chancellor, once so relaxed about the wealth created by the City of London, and the foreign money pouring into the capital, now tells us that the first thing he would do upon taking charge of the Treasury, presumably next May, would be to introduce a “mansion tax” on residential homes worth £2m or more. That would certainly hit investment bankers and billionaires, the vast majority inhabiting the capital’s more desirable districts.

Blogs

A bothersome GDP breakdown

None of this proves that the UK recovery is unsustainable. But there is nonetheless enough in these ...

British politics is heading back to 1974

Suppose for a moment that you faced an upcoming General Election in which the governing Conservative...

The Coalition’s regressive fiscal policies revealed

Which is the appropriate baseline for evaluating the distributional impact of the Coalition's fiscal...

Helping savers will not help the recovery

If interest rates were to rise to around 2.5 per cent few savers would spend more. But, by contrast,...

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Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there