News US Secretary of State John Kerry in Israel earlier this week

Currently into his 10th round of shuttle diplomacy, the United States Secretary of State knows the process demands very particular skills

Netanyahu faces backlash after Israel releases 26 Palestinian prisoners

Prisoners receive heroes' welcomes on their return to the West Bank and Gaza with officials and jubilant relatives lining up to greet them

Andy McSmith's Diary: The less than noble Lord Laird will have few friends left in the House

John Laird, the Ulster Unionist peer caught in a newspaper sting, is going to have to manage without free car parking and access to Parliament’s subsidised bars and dining rooms for four months, after the Lords Privileges Committee found that he had “demonstrated a clear willingness” to use his position for financial gain. Brian Mackenzie, former Durham Chief Constable and a Labour peer, has also been suspended – in his case, for six months.

An Ultra-Orthodox Jewish man prays at the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City during a snowstorm on 13 December 2013

Rare snowstorm leaves Jerusalem in lockdown

A rare snowstorm has blanketed Jerusalem, forcing a lockdown with police blocking access to and from the city.

Israeli settlement plans abandoned to avoid ‘confrontation’ with international community

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says blueprints were drawn up without his approval

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu stalls on calls to aid Palestinian suicide bombings victims' families as they sue Bank of China

Lawyers want leader to grant permission for former agent to testify

Avigdor Lieberman smiles before he is sworn in as the Israeli foreign minister

Israeli hard-liner Avigdor Lieberman returns as foreign minister

Hard-line Israeli politician Avigdor Lieberman, one of Israel's most powerful and polarizing figures, was reappointed as the country's foreign minister Monday after being cleared of all charges in a long-running corruption case.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says country may use military force to stop Iran from attaining nuclear weaponry

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu condemns 'deal of the century' for Iran over nuclear treaty

Leader says Israel may use military force to stop Iran from attaining nuclear weaponry

Children look on as Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem Fouad Twal (centre) stands amongst the ruins of a Palestinian home a week after it was demolished by the Israeli authority in East Jerusalem

Israel orders more demolitions of Palestinian flats in Jerusalem

Move to demoliish hundreds of Arab apartments ‘destroying every chance of peace’, says Fatah

Benjamin Netanyahu speaks at the United Nations General Assembly

US cowardice will let Israel’s isolated right off the hook

The Likudists suddenly find that the whole world wants peace in the Middle East rather than war

Israeli security service arrests 'Iranian spy'

Dual nationality Belgian-Iranian businessman Ali Mansouri accused of receiving $1m fee to spy on Israeli and Western targets

Israeli soldiers detain a Palestinian man after an attempt by EU diplomats to deliver aid to Palestinians remaining in Makhul

Rouhani’s Favourite Village: After erasing Makhul, Israel might see support from the US evaporate

The US is being torn between the old alliance with Israel and a conversation with Iran

Israeli Supreme Court revokes internment law that has seen 2,000 African migrants imprisoned without charge

The Israeli Supreme Court has struck down a law that allowed authorities to imprison African migrants without charge for up to three years.

'Israel's ethnic cleansing in Jerusalem is a direct blow to peace efforts' say Palestinian leaders

Palestinian leaders have accused Israel of dealing a “direct blow” to peace efforts after Israeli municipal authorities in Jerusalem decided to allocate more than £11m for the expansion of a settlement in East Jerusalem, which Palestinians see as their future capital.

Benjamin Netanyahu’s office said the scheme aimed to ‘strengthen Israeli public diplomacy’

Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda

In a campaign to improve its image abroad, the Israeli government plans to provide scholarships to hundreds of students at its seven universities in exchange for their making pro-Israel Facebook posts and tweets to foreign audiences.

Israel could be about to embark on a major building project in West Bank

Middle East peace process hits stumbling block as Israel 'considers new West Bank building project'

Israel could be about to embark on a major building project in West Bank settlements, just a day after the US Secretary of State, John Kerry, announced that peace talks between the Israelis and Palestinians were back on track.

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Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us