News

Detectives said they were "shaken" by "horrific" alleged cases

Money goes towards recruiting gunmen and to foreign investors in the pirates' lucrative enterprise

Worldwide sea piracy falls to lowest level in four years following international warship patrols in the Gulf of Aden

Attempted hijackings fell from more than 350 to 233 in the first nine months of this year

Roads closed around Lebanon in protest against bombing

Lebanese security officials say angry protesters have closed roads around the country to protest the bombing that killed a top security official and seven other people.

Revealed: Grant Shapps' get-rich-quick guide (or it that Michael Green's?)

Extracts of the get-rich-quick scheme created by the Conservative Party chairman, Grant Shapps, were revealed for the first time last night since it disappeared from the internet.

Jimmy Savile, Gary Glitter and a third, unnamed celebrity are accused of molesting underage girls in Savile's BBC dressing room

TV star is third accused of sexually assaulting girl in Savile's dressing room

Personality who cannot be named is alleged to have assaulted 14-year-old

Pakistani intelligence officials says US drone killed two men near the Afghan border

Pakistani intelligence officials say a suspected US missile strike has killed two men in the country's northwest near the Afghan border.

Belfast loyal order parade court bid is rejected

A late court bid to change restrictions on a contentious loyal order parade through Belfast has been rejected

Maths teacher Jeremy Forrest

Anonymity law for teachers to come into force

The married teacher missing with his teenage pupil might not have been identified under a new law that comes into force next week.

Inside Obama's war on weed

Does anybody still think criminalising drugs works? Alas, most people do, including Barack Obama. He was a dope user in his younger days, and when asked if he inhaled (Bill Clinton having said he didn't), responded: "I inhaled frequently. That was kind of the point." In America today, seventeen states say cannabis can be distributed for medical purposes. The Daily Beast has a fine report on what that means in practice.

Osama bin Laden was killed by Navy Seals last May

Navy Seal's book rewrites story of Bin Laden's death

Account that al-Qa'ida leader was unarmed when assassinated contradicts official line

KILLED - Osama bin Laden: Founder and leader of al-Qai'da. Killed by US commandos in May 2011

Former soldier claims Osama bin Laden was unarmed and already dead or dying when Navy Seals burst into room and shot him

Account of the raid in the book 'No Easy Day: The Autobiography of a Navy Seal' appears to suggest soldiers went against mission orders not to 'assassinate' bin Laden if he wasn’t posing a threat.

Deadly force: Navy Seals prepare for action

Bin Laden author faces death threats

Jihadists' fury at former US Navy Seal who wrote book about his part in operation to kill al-Qa'ida leader

Last night's viewing - The Girl Who Became Three Boys, Channel 4; Best of British: the Quadfather, Channel 4

I don't think I'll ever have problems with Twelfth Night again. Usually, the disguise element of Shakespeare's play is a bit of stretcher. How besotted would you have to be, you think, not to notice that the man you've just fallen in love with is actually a woman and then that he/she's been swapped with her/his brother? Having watched The Girl Who Became Three Boys, I can now see that Twelfth Night is virtually a work of documentary realism, though my opinion of Olivia has suffered a bit.

The banker Sir Fred Goodwin had his super-injunction exposed

Judge extends celebrities' legal right to anonymity

Celebrities who took out "super-injunctions" to prevent the media revealing details of their private lives were granted a further period of anonymity yesterday.

Brazilian Indians hold three Amazon dam engineers hostage after talks break down

Indians are holding three engineers at one of the work sites of the massive Belo Monte dam in Brazil's Amazon jungle following the breakdown of talks on the project's environmental impact.

Lianne Smith found guilty of killing her children in Spanish hotel

A British woman who smothered her two children in their beds has been found guilty of their "abominable" murders.

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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
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