Arts and Entertainment Channel 4's series claims to shed light on life on benefits for residents of the street, including Smoggy pictured here

No one's done much to help the residents of James Turner Street in Birmingham, now forever rechristened Benefits Street, thanks to Channel 4's controversial new documentary series. Despite – or maybe because of – the Twitter death threats, accusations of betrayal and media uproar, which followed its first broadcast, Channel 4 has defied calls for the series to be pulled. Did it hope this second episode would change some minds?

PM signals support for anti-terror action in North Africa

MPs told groups linked to al-Qa’ida represent a 'large threat' needing a 'robust response'

'It was a very exciting episode. I enjoyed it:' Rescued hostage gives extraordinary account of Algerian gas field terror attack

The first British hostages to speak of their ordeal in the al-Qa’ida desert siege today expressed relief at their rescue and warmly praised the Algerian army. One unnamed hostage who appeared on Algerian state television said, extraordinarily: “It was a very exciting episode. I enjoyed it.”

Jim Armitage: Threat to Western workers from lower-paid labour

Global Outlook Oil, gas and mining engineers have been living high on the hog for much of the last decade, thanks to the surging prices of commodities.

Jim Armitage: As far as oil and gas workers are concerned, money trumps risk

Global Outlook Engineers are a tough breed. Oil and gas engineers the toughest of the bunch. You have to be to work in the kinds of places with the most oil. Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Libya, Pakistan, Africa. Where there's oil, there's trouble.

Editorial: David Cameron's mixed signals on terrorism

The official view is that the UK does not negotiate or pay ransom to kidnappers

Algeria hostage crisis: grim news that can be traced to the ‘triumphant’ removal of Gaddafi

Gaddafi’s overthrow broke all kinds of local ethnic, tribal and commercial bargains and power-broking arrangements that we never understood

'A very serious and dangerous situation': David Cameron chairs emergency meeting on Algerian hostage crisis

David Cameron chaired an emergency meeting today on the Algerian hostage crisis which Downing Street described as a “very serious and dangerous situation”.

Algeria crisis 'remains ongoing' after British hostages killed in Saharan bloodbath

Government dismay after Algerian forces attack Islamists at BP gas plant

Desert storm: Islamists take Mali fight to Algeria

Islamist militants were holding  up to 41 Western gas engineers at a remote BP site in Algeria today, deepening fears that the conflict in Mali could unleash an anti-Western war across the deserts of northern Africa.

Colosseum at El Jem

Tunisia: Treasures for the taking

It's been two years since the Arab Spring uprising, yet tourists have failed to return to Tunisia in any numbers. All the more reason to pay a visit

Algeria: Colonial past haunts François Hollande

President François Hollande has acknowledged that France’s colonisation of Algeria had been “brutal and unfair” but stopped short of making an apology to the oil-rich North African state.

In The Studio: Adel Abdessemed, artist

'When I make a line I make it like a scalpel. Drawings like cuts'

Rooney captained England once before, against Brazil in 2009

Sam Wallace: Giving the England captaincy to Wayne Rooney is not ideal – it's pragmatic

The simple answer is it was more trouble not to give him the captaincy

Bendjedid in 2010: he steered Algeria away from Soviet influence

Chadli Bendjedid: Politician whose reforming zeal led to bloodshed

Chadli Bendjedid was a former President of Algeria whose political fall coincided with the introduction of democratic reform which served only to spark a decade-long, bloody civil war. He became President in 1979, following the death of Houari Boumedienne, and declared at his inauguration that he had no interest in the wealth and honour that might be bestowed upon him, affirming that socialism was "an irreversible option for our country". In fact he set out to gradually rid Algeria of his predecessor's influence and his often repressive policies.

Ben Quilter takes the crowd’s acclaim after winning the bronze medal

Top seed Quilter fights back from disappointment to take bronze in judo

Ben Quilter overcame a disappointing start to the day to win judo bronze for Great Britain at the ExCeL last night.

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform