Ian Birrell

Ian Birrell is a former Deputy Editor of The Independent and co-founder of Africa Express

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The Independent around the web

As gay people celebrate, the treatment of the disabled just gets worse

With more spending cuts looming, are we content to leave one minority locked out of society as second-class citizens?

Ukraine crisis: There is no moral equivalence between Moscow and Kiev

This is potentially the biggest crisis in Europe since the bloodstained Balkan wars

Eugenia spent time at the Maidan protests: ‘Whatever politicians do must be controlled by the people’

Ukraine crisis: ‘I am convinced Yulia Tymoshenko is a real heroine’ says Eugenia

The former Prime Minister’s daughter says her mother is determined to continue the fight for justice and democracy

Is Europe really a safe enough place for my African friend to visit?

Look at our continent and you could see a place cursed by corruption, scarred by communal struggles and riddled with racism

Two cheers for Nick Clegg – at least he’s talking about drugs

He is absolutely right in his analysis that prohibition has failed and addiction must be treated as a health issue

Michael Gove is to relieve chairman Dame Sally Morgan of her duties

Sharpen the axe, minister: There should be more political appointments, not fewer

Why hasn't a government ostensibly committed to serious public and private-sector reform installed its own people in these critical posts already?

With the death of Ariel Sharon, I am left to wonder what happened to the political ideal that drew me to a kibbutz all those years ago

The kibbutz system showed Israel in a different light from how it is perceived today

'Chicken McNuggets' at a McDonalds fast-food restaurant in Yichang, central China's Hubei province

World hunger has dropped greatly – but what do we do about the planet’s expanding waistline?

Body mass index rises alongside economic growth

Paul Kagame has been described as a 'war criminal'

Darling of the West, terror to his opponents: Meet Rwanda’s new scourge - Paul Kagame

Paul Kagame’s rivals keep dying, but Clinton and Blair still shake his hand, writes Ian Birrell

What’s wrong with the Tories? Why aren’t they being more optimistic?

Voters will turn away if they keep hearing sneers and grumbles from Cameron and co

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Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

Feather dust-up

A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
Boris Johnson's war on diesel

Boris Johnson's war on diesel

11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
5 best waterproof cameras

Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

Louis van Gaal interview

Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

Will Gore: Outside Edge

The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz