News Getting the hump: camels do battle in front of tens of thousands of spectators

On Sunday, more than 20,000 people will gather in Turkey to watch camels do battle in a spectacle that dates back thousands of years. It is, depending on your attachment to the ungainly beasts, a historic cultural institution to be celebrated – or a throwback to an era before animal-rights campaigns when it was OK to starve an animal for three months to make it cross.

Some lions in the zoo in 2006 - animal-rights activists have long been concerned about conditions at Giza

‘Hell for animals’: Egypt's Giza Zoo beset by tear gas, bear ‘riots’ and giraffe ‘suicide’

Animal-rights activists have long been concerned about conditions there

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.

Coming into contact with camels has been known to spread the respiratory virus

Ship of the desert: Camels of Arabia suspected of carrying deadly virus cargo

The one-humped dromedary camel of Arabia may be the source of a mysterious respiratory virus that emerged without warning last year causing kidney failure and severe pneumonia and leading to the death of about half the people known to be infected.

Circus animal ban should be watered down to exclude raccoons and others

Snakes, zebras, camels, raccoons and reindeers should be excluded from circus animal ban, say MPs

Government proposals to ban all wild animals from travelling circuses should be watered down to allow zebras, camels, reindeer and snakes to stay on the road, MPs have recommended.

Harold Bell Lasseter, seen right on a truck in Alice Springs in 1930, after finding nuggets ‘as big as plums’

El Dorado 'found' on Google Earth: Now expedition launched to retrieve legendary Australian gold

In 1929, Harold Bell Lasseter transfixed Australia with a tale of a quartz outcrop in the heart of the continent containing gold nuggets "as thick as plums in a pudding". He had stumbled across the reef, buried beneath sand hills in Western Australia's remote Gibson Desert, he claimed, while prospecting for rubies three decades earlier.

Helen Flanagan poses to promote the new PETA campaign, in Covent Garden

Ex-Coronation Street actress Helen Flanagan fleshes out exotic skins protest for Peta

Former Coronation Street star Helen Flanagan did her bit to protest against the skin trade by showing off some flesh of her own.

Campaigners want wild animals banned from performing circus stunts

Government to ban use of wild animals in travelling circuses from 2015

More than 30,000 people signed an Independent petition calling for a ban

President Hollande was given the first camel in February

Mali presents François Hollande with a new camel after the first one was eaten by the family caring for it

There was, finally, some good news for President François Hollande today.

A view of the Yas Marina circuit built in Abu Dhabi

The Qatar 'Dream Football League' may be a hoax, but never discount any plans from the Middle East

Report in The Times claims Premier League sides will be offered £175m to compete in tournament

Artist's impression of the giant camel that lived within the Arctic Circle in northern Canada 3.5 million years ago

Giant camel fossil unearthed in the Arctic

Think animals of the frozen north and you think polar bear, musk ox, and walrus – but now you can also think camel.

The Big Six: Super-sized rentals

Spitbank Fort, The Solent

One of Karl Lagerfeld's latest creations

Karl Lagerfeld's animal magnetism: defiant designer goes big on fur

Fendi revels in mink and fox

The Griffon vulture was fitted with a GPS transmitter

Meet operative PP0277: A secret agent – or just a vulture hungry for dead camel?

Sudan says he's an Israeli operative – but his handlers say he's too easily distracted for that. Matthew Kalman reports on a spy thriller

Lord Monckton was an adviser to Margaret Thatcher

Lord Monckton kicked out of international climate change conference after posing as a delegate

Christopher Monckton, a UK Independence Party activist and dogged critic of the environmentalist movement, has been turned out of an international climate change conference in Qatar after posing as a delegate.

Postcard from... Granada

Since late last week, a photographic exhibition inside the Alhambra covering the last 70 years of Oman's social and religious history offers a rare and intriguing insight into one of the Middle East's least-known countries.

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All this talk of an ‘apocalyptic’ threat is simply childish

Robert Fisk: All this talk of an ‘apocalyptic’ threat is simply childish

Chuck Hagel and Martin Dempsey were pure Hollywood. They only needed Tom Cruise
Mafia Dons: is the Camorra in control of the Granite City?

Mafia Dons: is the Camorra in control of the Granite City?

So claims an EU report which points to the Italian Mob’s alleged grip on everything from public works to property
Emmys look set to overhaul the Oscars as Hollywood’s prize draw

Emmys look set to overhaul the Oscars as Hollywood’s prize draw

Once the poor relation, the awards show now has the top stars and boasts the best drama
What happens to African migrants once they land in Italy during the summer?

What happens to migrants once they land in Italy?

Memphis Barker follows their trail through southern Europe
French connection: After 1,300 years, there’s a bridge to Mont Saint-Michel

French connection: After 1,300 years, there’s a bridge to Mont Saint-Michel

The ugly causeway is being dismantled, an elegant connection erected in its place. So everyone’s happy, right?
Frank Mugisha: Uganda's most outspoken gay rights activist on changing people's attitudes, coming out, and the threat of being attacked

Frank Mugisha: 'Coming out was a gradual process '

Uganda's most outspoken gay rights activist on changing people's attitudes, coming out, and the threat of being attacked
Radio 1 to hire 'YouTube-famous' vloggers to broadcast online

Radio 1’s new top ten

The ‘vloggers’ signed up to find twentysomething audience
David Abraham: Big ideas for the small screen

David Abraham: Big ideas for the small screen

A blistering attack on US influence on British television has lifted the savvy head of Channel 4 out of the shadows
Florence Knight's perfect picnic: Make the most of summer's last Bank Holiday weekend

Florence Knight's perfect picnic

Polpetto's head chef shares her favourite recipes from Iced Earl Grey tea to baked peaches, mascarpone & brown sugar meringues...
Horst P Horst: The fashion photography genius who inspired Madonna comes to the V&A

Horst P Horst comes to the V&A

The London's museum has delved into its archives to stage a far-reaching retrospective celebrating the photographer's six decades of creativity
Mark Hix recipes: Try our chef's summery soups for a real seasonal refresher

Mark Hix's summery soups

Soup isn’t just about comforting broths and steaming hot bowls...
Tim Sherwood column: 'It started as a three-horse race but turned into the Grand National'

Tim Sherwood column

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Eden Hazard: Young, gifted... not yet perfect

Eden Hazard: Young, gifted... not yet perfect

Eden Hazard admits he is still below the level of Ronaldo and Messi but, after a breakthrough season, is ready to thrill Chelsea’s fans
Tim Howard: I’m an old dog. I don’t get too excited

Tim Howard: I’m an old dog. I don’t get too excited

The Everton and US goalkeeper was such a star at the World Cup that the President phoned to congratulate him... not that he knows what the fuss is all about
Match of the Day at 50: Show reminds us that even the most revered BBC institution may have a finite lifespan – thanks to the opposition

Tom Peck on Match of the Day at 50

The show reminds us that even the most revered BBC institution may have a finite lifespan – thanks to the opposition