News he giant Rumaila oilfield, near Basra, produces a third of Iraq's oil output. The British security man allegedly at the centre of religious unrest works at a camp run by oil services group Schlumberger

At a time of tremendous religious significance for the Shia, the insensitive actions of a British security man appear to have sparked a major crisis

War reporter's widow demands truth over killing

The widow of Terry Lloyd, the ITN war correspondent killed by American "friendly" crossfire during the Iraq invasion, has called on the US military to reveal "the whole truth" about his death – including the name of the soldier responsible.

Our legacy is a dark and forbidding place of militias

The siren for an impending attack went off three times in three hours yesterday, with anti-missile guns roaring in response while soldiers dived for cover. This was no over-reaction – the base at Basra airport had been hit by rockets a day earlier. British troops have withdrawn from their one remaining base in Basra City and are highly unlikely to take part in direct fighting again. Five years after the start of the war, the beginning of the end comes with little fanfare.

Days Of Significance, Tricycle Theatre, London

Roy Williams's Days of Significance was one of the most powerful plays of last year, but it had a disappointingly limited run when it premiered at the Swan Theatre in Stratford. So it's good to report that Maria Aberg's excellent RSC production has now resurfaced at the Tricycle, in a revised version with a much more dramatically effective third act.

Partick Cockburn: A gross failure that ignored history and ended with a humiliating retreat

The war in Iraq has been one of the most disastrous wars ever fought by Britain. It has been small but we achieved nothing. It will stand with Crimea and the Boer War as conflicts which could have been avoided and were demonstrations of incompetence from start to finish.

Defence minister visits Iraq troops

Defence Secretary Des Browne arrived in Basra this morning on an unannounced visit to British troops in Iraq.

Grim reminder of reality as RAF man dies in Basra

A British airman was killed in a rocket attack on the military base at Basra airport in southern Iraq on Friday night, the Ministry of Defence confirmed yesterday.

British photojournalist and his interpreter kidnapped

A British photojournalist and his interpreter have been kidnapped in Basra, it was disclosed last night.

Blair went to war on a lie, law lords told

The mothers of two teenage soldiers killed in Iraq accused Tony Blair's government of going to war "on a lie" as they took their fight for a public inquiry into the conflict to the House of Lords.

So, what did we achieve? After four years and 174 dead, Britain's lead role in Basra is over

As responsibility for security is formally passed to theIraqis today, Raymond Whitaker examines what, if anything,our armed forces have accomplished there since 2003

The Big Question: Have the bans on smoking in public places been a success?

Why are we asking this question now?

How the ruling changes settlements

Who will be affected by yesterday's ruling?

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War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003
Barbara Woodward: Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with the growing economic superpower

Our woman in Beijing builds a new relationship

Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with growing economic power
Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer. But the only British soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross in Afghanistan has both

Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer

Beware of imitations, but the words of the soldier awarded the Victoria Cross were the real thing, says DJ Taylor
Alexander McQueen: The catwalk was a stage for the designer's astonishing and troubling vision

Alexander McQueen's astonishing vision

Ahead of a major retrospective, Alexander Fury talks to the collaborators who helped create the late designer's notorious spectacle
New BBC series savours half a century of food in Britain, from Vesta curries to nouvelle cuisine

Dinner through the decades

A new BBC series challenged Brandon Robshaw and his family to eat their way from the 1950s to the 1990s
Philippa Perry interview: The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course

Philippa Perry interview

The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course
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Bill Granger's Indonesian stir-fry recipes

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Harry Kane interview

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Michael Calvin's Last Word

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Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

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