Voices

Everyone knows that the Assad regime – from father Hafez onwards – has employed torture and executions to preserve the doubtful purity of the Baath party

France prosecutes parents and 'cutters' under existing laws against grievous bodily harm and violence to children

The French way: a better approach to fighting FGM?

Britain is trying to get tough on female genital mutilation – but does France offer the answer

Britain should 'hang its head in shame' for failing Syrian refugees, says Amnesty International

UK is one of a number of EU countries who have offered no resettlement or humanitarian places, charity says

Two men hanged by government in Japan in latest ‘secret executions’

Human rights groups slam practice in which inmates are told they will die just hours beforehand

Save the Children has been campaigning for victims of the Syrian war

The price of charity: Save the Children exposed after seeking approval of energy firms

Save the Children accused of suppressing criticism of corporate sponsor British Gas, while internal emails reveal how fuel poverty campaign was dropped to avoid offending EDF

‘Detainees are made to dig their own graves’: Former guard speaks out as satellite images show North Korean gulags are growing

Amnesty International report reveals female political prisoners are raped and then made to ‘disappear’

Occupy Birmingham students defy injunction after university pursues them in court

Protesters demand fairer pay for staff, more representation with the university and lower tuition fees

Protesters burn the US flag in Peshawar yesterday

Cricketer turned politician Imran Khan leads anti-drone protesters in blockade of key Nato supply line

Thousands rally in Peshawar, amid fears the CIA will aim unmanned anti-Taliban strikes deeper into Pakistani territory

The Fifa president Sepp Blatter

World Cup 2022: Amnesty International calls on Fifa to take stance against 'abuse of migrant workers' in Qatar

The human rights group say that they have found an alarming level of exploitation

Foreign workers in Qatar are beholden to employers who sponsor their visas

Fifa must address abuse of 2022 World Cup workers in Qatar, Amnesty says

Fifa, international football’s governing body, must urgently address Qatar’s exploitation of migrant workers that has become “routine and widespread”, a new report warns.

How Shell 'fixes' its pollution record in the Niger Delta

Shell has always claimed the oil spills which pollute villages, farms and fisheries in Nigeria's Niger Delta are mainly due to locals sabotaging pipelines for political reasons or theft. But a painstakingly researched report yesterday alleged that, in fact, corrosion and poor maintenance by the British oil multinational were the real reason for many of the spillages.

Fear of imprisonment for being gay in African countries is grounds for asylum, EU court rules

The ruling follows a request for advice from The Netherlands about three gay refugees seeking asylum from Uganda, Sierra Leone and Senegal

Day of the Girl: A survivor’s journey after female genital mutilation

Women in my community worry that they won’t be a good Somali woman if they haven’t undergone FGM.  This is a practice that continues to control women's sexuality

Vladimir Putin with the Olympic torch at a ceremony in Moscow yesterday

2014 Sochi Winter Olympics: Corruption and censorship cast shadow over Russia's Games

Special report: Allegations of fraudulent contracts worth billions threaten to derail Putin’s showpiece

Missing bricklayer was tortured and killed by police, prosecutors claim

A Brazilian bricklayer who disappeared more than two months ago was tortured and killed by police in Rio de Janeiro for information about drug dealers, according to prosecutors.

Herman Wallace pictured in 2008

Former Black Panther Herman Wallace dies days after judge overturns murder conviction that saw him serve 41 years in solitary confinement

A former Black Panther who served 41 years in solitary confinement has died days after a US federal judge overturned his conviction for the murder of a prison guard.

Sport
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Ian Thorpe had Rio 2016 in his sights
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Life and Style
Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
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Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

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Arts and Entertainment
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booksMalorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
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Mrs Brown's Boy: D'Movie has been a huge commercial success
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Curtain calls: Madani Younis
theatreMadani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Life and Style
Douglas McMaster says the food industry is ‘traumatised’
food + drinkSilo in Brighton will have just six staple dishes on the menu every day, including one meat option, one fish, one vegan, and one 'wild card'
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Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
The Open 2014: Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?

The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?