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Italian luxury notebook maker Moleskine has picked Canary Wharf and Covent Garden for its first standalone UK stores.

Chinese philanthropist Chen Guangbiao

I am serious about buying the New York Times, says Chinese tycoon Chen Guangbiao

One of China's richest men has insisted he is serious about buying the New York Times so that he can work on "rebuilding its credibility and influence".

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is led by a Shinto priest as he visits Yasukuni shrine in Tokyo

Japanese PM to explain controversial shrine visit

Neighbouring countries unhappy over public 'celebration' of Japan's attacks

Xu Shuaijun's hot air balloon near the disputed islands

China-Japan tensions: Chef crashes balloon near disputed islands

The islands have caused tension between the countries for some time

The Liaoning docked at Dalian Port in December 2013

China's Liaoning aircraft carrier completes sea trials

Trial run was notable for near-collision with an American ship

Chinese officials banned from smoking in public as Beijing moves to curb dirty habits

China is the world's largest manufacturer and consumer of tobacco

A crowd of mainly Uighur shop at a bazaar in China's Xinjiang region

Chinese police shoot eight 'terrorists' dead in ethnically tense western region

The deaths are the latest in a string of violent outbursts where local Uighur Muslim people want greater autonomy from Beijing.

London: Where offices are now pricier to rent than even Hong Kong

Shortage of space and rise in demand has put the capital in world's top spot, says leading agent

London unseats Hong Kong as the world's most expensive office market

London's West End has seen a 14 per cent jump in costs this year to $259

North Korean businessmen are summoned back from China after Jang Song Thaek execution

Sources claim 'large numbers' of officials are being called back to North Korea

Christians at a village Christian church service in Henan Province, China

Sky News crew trapped as China crowd turns on detained Christian pastor

A group of Chinese rights lawyers advocating for a detained Christian pastor and his aides in central China said they were assaulted Friday by a crowd of unidentified people who also harassed a British television crew.

Bank warns of dangers from a great wall of Chinese liquidity

Capital liberalisation will drive China's investments to 30 per cent of global GDP

US war veteran detained by North Korea Merrill Newman free to fly home after "apologising"

Merrill Newman, 85, was taken off a plane last month, accused of ordering the deaths of North Koreans during the 1950-3 war.

Alan Greenspan

Alan Greenspan blasts Bitcoin as Beijing moves to ban the virtual currency

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan has hit out at the virtual currency describing it as a "bubble" in a television interview.

Despite being home to half the world's pigs – and the largest consumers of pork in the world - the authorities in Beijing are concerned about the quality of their stock

Britain to export pig semen to China in £45m trade deal

Plan is for UK boars to improve Chinese pigs' genetic make-up

David Cameron came baring gifts: Hilary Mantel's Booker winning novels, a framed black and white photograph of him and Samanth and Charles Moore's biography of Thatcher

Cameron arrived in China bearing gifts... but there will be a price to pay

David Cameron realises that this remains a tricky trip for him

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 30 January 2015
Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links
Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing