News A Syrian rebel support group has threatened to blow up the Atomium in Brussels

A plot to attack the Belgian capital stokes fears Europe will targeted by radicalised fighters returning from Syria. Charlotte McDonald-Gibson reports from Brussels

Anger sweeps Belgium over child-sex ring

Palaces in Antwerp and Hasselt with stones; there was a bomb scare at the Vilvoorde home of Prime Minister Jean-Luc Dehaene; and demonstrators in Turhout with pasta in their hair gave the public prosecutor dried spaghetti.

Belgian protest goes on despite justice promise

Belgium's justice minister pledged to reinforce inquiries into the country's child sex and murder scandals yesterday as nationwide protests continued over the sacking of the judge leading investigations.

Belgium erupts in judge's defence

A surge of spontaneous public emotion swept across normally placid Belgium yesterday after the sacking of the crusading judge who led the inquiry into the country's child sex and murder scandals. This triggered strikes in cities and towns throughout the country, protests angrily directed at the state itself.

De Beers sets sights on diamond peace

De Beers will tomorrow attempt to reassure its key customers that its grip on the world's diamond remains intact, as 160 gem buyers from all over the world gather at its City of London headquarters for one of the year's most important "sights".

Romancing the stone among cobbled streets and rococo masonry

The betrothal had long since passed. Families had approved, wedding arrangements had been discussed, but still there was no ring. An initial cash-flow problem was exacerbated by the wait: the more time went by, the larger the eventual prize would have to be. And how to avoid a Ratneresque nightmare of substandard, worthless junk?

Recognition digs deep in hunt for returns

Recognition Systems, a recent flotation now at 121p, has the hallmarks of a highly risky but also extremely promising little company. It was formed in 1989 to develop neural computing technology. Advanced stuff, it allows companies with vast quantities of data to mine the information for customer profiles and save a lot of statisticians' time. So far, the company is targeting banks, insurers, pharmaceuticals companies, healthcare and government - all of which have vast amounts of data buried in their organisations, much of which they are unable to exploit to their full advantage. The gamble is whether the management has the necessary expertise and technical nous to make it work. On a cursory examination, the answer would appear to be yes. Buy.

Letter: EU 3per cent 'limit' on budget deficit is a fallacy

Sir: Gavyn Davies ( 29 April) is guilty of perpetuating the myth that Maastricht imposes a limit of 3 per cent on budget deficits. Three per cent is merely a reference value, such that the EU makes an evaluation of the situation of states exceeding this value in order to determine whether their deficit can be considered to be excessive.

Iranian ship carried arms

Brussels - An Iranian ship that docked recently in Belgium carried arms which could have been used in a terrorist attack in Germany, according to the Antwerp public prosecutor's office, Reuter reports.

`Mosquito' who rattled Russian mafia's cage

In Antwerp, Sarah Helm tracks down a Cold War profiteer struggling with the new disorder

Ivanisevic keeps rolling

Tennis

Agassi falls to world's No 462

Tennis

Krajicek waits for Stich

Tennis

MUSIC: It ain't over till the fat man's hanky song

THE bottom-line demand of Turandot is for two acts of romantic, oriental schmaltz to keep the audience happy until "Nessun Dorma" - but Christopher Alden's production for English National Opera offers nothing of the sort. Set starkly against lurid, neon-lit designs and corrugated surfaces (with the whole of Act 1 contained by a wall of mug-shots of the princely victims looking like a rent boys' gazetteer), the tone is rigorously anti-romantic; and it culminates in a final scene where Turandot and Calaf not only fail to kiss but end up on different sides of the stage, ignoring each other. It's as though Alden refuses to accept the possibility of love between these characters; as though the riddles, challenges and conquests are nothing more than a self-proving game of Russian roulette where the most you can expect is survival. In short, this is no Turandot for traditionalists - or for football fans in innocent pursuit of what the fat man's hanky song is all about.

England to go places

Basketball
Career Services

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