Canada vows to defend Santa Claus from Russian troops as row over territory escalates

Vladimir Putin told a defence ministry meeting that he wished to see the military bolster its presence in the territory

The News Matrix: Wednesday 11 December 2013

Two French troops killed in gun battle

Monocle editor in chief Tyler Brule, right, and editor Andrew Tuck

Immigration officials raid office of upmarket lifestyle magazine

Monocle's publisher, Tyler Brûlé, described the 'extraordinary' scenes as officers checked the visas of staff

UK wage rises set to lag behind European neighbours

The squeeze on British households is set to worsen next year as companies crimp pay rises to among the lowest in Europe.

The ten coldest places on Earth

Scientists claim to have recorded a new lowest ever temperature on earth, but where is it and just where are the coldest places on the planet?

Deepa Naik, Trenton Oldfield and their daughter. The family face being split up if Oldfield is deported back to his native Australia

Trenton Oldfield deportation: Boat Race protester allowed to stay in UK

Activist wins 'unprecedented' deportation case as judge overturns Theresa May's decision

Rough Copy attend the premiere of Thor: The Dark World in Leicester Square

X Factor 2013: Luke Friend wins place in final as Rough Copy sent home

It's the end of the road for the Croydon group, who lost out to Luke Friend in the public vote

Heineken Cup round-up: Chris Ashton double tops Saracens romp

Saracens put the Heineken Cup quarter-finals in view by collecting a bonus point and top spot in Pool Three with a five-try victory away to Zebre in Pool Three. Chris Ashton scored two of them in the second half of the 39-10 triumph after Sarries led 25-0 at half-time courtesy of tries from George Kruis, Ernst Joubert and Chris Wyles.

Good luck to Tom Daley, but some questions remain...

There are already adverts appearing on the telly about the second series of Splash! coming to our screens in January. I appeared briefly on the first series, and every time one of the new ads is on I get terrible flashbacks to those weird weeks last January.

Clermont Auvergne wing Napolioni Nalaga celebrates one of his two tries against the Scarlets

Clermont Auvergne 32 Llanelli Scarlets 11 match report: Napolioni Nalaga double sinks Welsh club in dominant second-half performance

Scarlets held Clermont to a half-time 6-3 deficit but Heineken Cup favourites stretched their unbeaten home record to 68 matches

The British women's team pursuit have taken more than 10 seconds off their time in two months

Cycling World Cup: GB women smash own pursuit record – twice

“Let’s go faster,” suggested Katie Archibald, the newest addition to the women’s team pursuit line-up when questioned as to their ambition in Mexico this week at the second leg of the World Cup. And Archibald and her team-mates, Jo Rowsell, Dani King and Elinor Barker, have done exactly that.

My life in travel - Jodie Whittaker

'Hiking the Tongariro Alpine Crossing in New Zealand was extraordinary'
Lava land: volcanic scenery in New Zealand

My life in travel - Jodie Whittaker

'Hiking the Tongariro Alpine Crossing in New Zealand was extraordinary'

Alain Sutter helped Roy Hodgson's Switzerland reach the last 16 in 1994

World Cup 2014: ‘Roy Hodgson learnt dangers of boredom in 1994’

Swiss Alain Sutter recalls playing under England manager in his first tournament

A view of the Maracana in Rio - where England will be based

World Cup 2014: England manager Roy Hodgson wary of the dangers of boredom after experience with Switzerland in 1994

Alain Sutter, who was Hodgson's creative force in the Switzerland team, recalls his experiences under the current England manager

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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
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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