Travel

Mons is embracing the future as it prepares for its role as next year’s European Capital of Culture, but it’s also steeped in intriguing history. Philip Sweeney explores its two sides

5 ways elephants changed history: A brief history of stomping victories and disastrous reversals

It was the arrival of the cannon in the 19th century that finally heralded the end of elephants being used as an instrument of war. Until that time, from as early as 1000BC, they trampled across battlefields around the globe, through wars in places as far flung as Yemen and Sri Lanka.

Nigeria eases curfew and boosts security in Maiduguri following attacks by militants

Nigerian authorities relaxed a curfew and intensified military patrols in Maiduguri on Tuesday, a day after suspected Islamist militants launched strikes on military bases in the northeast city.

Bletchley Park

Remains of two of Bletchley Park's earliest World War Two buildings are discovered

The brick footings of two huts were revealed as workmen were digging up one of the former code-breaking centre's car parks

Woolwich murder trial: Armed police officer 'feared for her life as Lee Rigby accused charged towards her with machete'

One of the first police officers on the scene of the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby thought she was going to die when one of the killers charged towards her waving a machete, the Old Bailey heard today.

The incident happened in a Reykjavík suburb

Man shot dead in first ever fatal police shooting in Iceland

The island nation has such a low crime rate officers rarely have to draw their weapons

GTA 5 Online's 'Content Creator' feature leaked ahead of launch

Publishers Rockstar have promised that the feature will allow gamers to create their own custom Deathmatch maps and tracks for racing

Stabbed lawyer Peter Maine ‘may have killed himself’, police say

A solicitor at the centre of a fraud investigation may have stabbed himself to death, police said.

Ashes in my Mouth, Sand in my Shoes, By Per Petterson, Translated by Don Bartlett - Review

This is a small book that packs a punch. Arvid Jansen lives with his mother, father and sister, Gry, in early-1960s Sweden in the shadow of the Cold War – his Uncle Rolf hates communists. The family is poor, Dad is a factory worker and they live in a leaky tower block. Arvid is a frail, hyper-sensitive child who stays in bed for four days when told that nuclear war may end the world. His imaginative neuroses determine his actions – he smashes the clock to release the caged tiger because he can’t bear his mother ageing and, for him, six-and-a-half is “enough”.

Books of the year 2013: War

Private Alex Stringer, of the Royal Logistic Corps, was 20 when he was blown up in Afghanistan: "The reason I lost my left leg so high up is because the burning paint cooked my left leg all the way down to the bone. But if I hadn't set myself on fire, I would have bled out and died – as a result of it, all the arteries became cauterised".

Young female victims of gangs don't ‘allow’ themselves to be used

We expect girls to be good, to know better and to stay out of trouble. Why don't we question the self-esteem of those committing the crimes?

Fusilier Lee Rigby captured on CCTV footage in the last minutes of his life; the film was played to the Old Bailey

'Butchered like a joint of meat': Jurors gasp as they are shown footage of Lee Rigby murder

Jurors told that Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale drove car straight at him at around 30mph to 40mph

Dirty Wars: Film review - criminality at the heart of the American system

(15) Richard Rowley, 86 mins

As the West looks away, the Islamists claim Syria’s rebellion for themselves

Diplomatic Channels: Hague is like someone offering sunglasses to a dying man

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has urged the government and opposition to help the conference succeed by taking steps to stop the violence

Syria: Government and opposition agree to peace talks

Syria's warring government and opposition are to meet for the first time in an attempt to halt the fighting that has killed more than 100,000 people.

Bombs and guns ‘have killed 11,500 children’ in Syria, research shows, including some executed and tortured

Reports records 764 children as summarily executed, 112 of whom were reported to have been tortured, including some of infant age

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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

How to make your own Easter egg

Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef declares barbecue season open with his twist on a tradtional Easter Sunday lamb lunch

Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

Next weekend, our chef plans to return to his Aussie roots by firing up the barbecue
Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

The England prop relives the highs and lows of last Saturday's remarkable afternoon of Six Nations rugby
Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?

Cricket World Cup 2015

Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?
The Last Word: Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing