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While politicians agonise over the size of the Government’s debt, one of the most expensive publicly funded projects in recent years is quietly getting under way.

The Ministry of Defence wastes up to £94m a year training 16 and 17-year-old army recruits for roles which could be filled more cost-effectively by adults, according to analysis by campaign groups.

MoD 'wastes cash training under-18s'

The Ministry of Defence wastes up to £94m a year training 16 and 17-year-old army recruits for roles which could be filled more cost-effectively by adults, according to analysis by campaign groups.

Shaker-Aamer was sent to Guantánamo Bay in 2002, and cleared to leave in 2007.

Shaker Aamer: 'I may have to die. I hope not. I want to see my family again'

Shaker Aamer was sent to Guantánamo Bay in 2002, and cleared to leave in 2007. Now, weakened by hunger strike, he asks what his fate has to do with justice

Files are seen at the venue of the Al-Sweady Inquiry

Al-Swaiedi inquiry: Teenager was tortured and hanged, claims his uncle

A teenager who it is claimed was unlawfully killed by British troops in Iraq had been tortured and hanged, his uncle has claimed.

The coffin containing the body of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher arrives for the ceremonial funeral at St Paul's Cathedral

'Lying here, she is one of us': A selection of quotes as last respects paid to Margaret Thatcher

Bishop of London, the Rt Rev Richard Chartres: "After the storm of a life lived in the heat of political controversy, there is a great calm."

Lord Hanningfield at court facing charges of false accounting

Andy McSmith's Diary: Oh Lords! Disgraced peer trousers £5,500 in one month

It seems that nothing will ever shame the ermine troughers out of claiming from the public purse. Paul White, aka Lord Hanningfield, an ex-Tory peer, has not spoken in the House of Lords, nor tabled any written questions since he was sent to jail for fiddling his expenses, but figures reveal that in November he had his best month yet for pocketing the £300 daily allowance to which he is entitled just for turning up. He signed in on 17 separate days, which entitled him to £5,100. He also claimed £407 travel costs. That means that in the first eight months since his return after his prison spell, Lord Hanningfield trousered a total of £21,000 in daily attendance allowances, plus £1,736 costs.

An Afghan policeman attached with US soldiers holds his machine gun during a patrol along the outskirts of Kandahar City

MPs fear Afghanistan civil war after withdrawal

Afghanistan could descend into civil war and corruption and drugs trading could continue to cause problems once coalition forces withdraw from the country in less than two years' time, a report from the Defence Select Committee warned today.

Militants killed seven in Iraq on deadliest day for the US in eight months

Militants killed six Americans, including a young female diplomat, and an Afghan doctor in a pair of attacks in Afghanistan yesterday in the deadliest day for the US in the war in eight months.

North Korea moves missile 'with considerable range' to its east coast, as US troops in South are put on high alert amid rising tensions and threat of 'merciless' nuclear strike

Reports in the Japan suggested missile could be a KN-08, which is believed to be a long-range missile that if operational could hit the United States

Afghan recruits are leaving the national army at a rate of 5,000 every month

Nato alarm over Afghan army crisis: loss of recruits threatens security as handover looms

Thousands of recruits are quitting the newly formed Afghan police and armed forces every month, raising fears over their ability to protect the emerging democracy when coalition troops leave the country in less than two years' time. For every 10 new soldiers recruited to the Afghan National Army (ANA), at least three are lost because they have been sacked, captured or killed in action, new figures have revealed. British officials admit that current "attrition rates", with more than 5,000 soldiers quitting every month, threaten the force's long-term effectiveness.

Sea King rescue helicopter fleet will be nearly halved and replaced by American models

The number of search-and-rescue helicopters is expected to be cut from 40 to 22 after the service is  privatised, it emerged today.

A rebel fighter guards a prison cell in Bangui

South African counter-attack against Central African Republic rebels would be ‘complete madness’

Opposition is rising against South African intervention as more deaths are feared

Space for Barack, but not Barak: Embarrassment for Israel after former premier is excluded from Obama state dinner and events

Ehud Barak was not invited to any official functions, despite glittering military and political careers

Kim Jong-un talks with soldiers taking part in anti-landing drills on the country’s east coast

North Korean missiles 'on highest alert' to attack US bases on mainland America, Hawaii and Guam

Sabre-rattling continues as South Korea warns its neighbour to abandon  nuclear weapons

Poll: Is Greg Dyke the right man to lead the FA?

Greg Dyke, former Director-General of the BBC, has been appointed as Chairman of the FA.

Now trim an extra £2.5bn! Osborne spells out Budget cuts to pay for infrastructure projects

Whitehall departments are to face fresh spending cuts over the next two years, with the money saved spent on infrastructure projects, Chancellor George Osborne told a pre-Budget meeting of the Cabinet today.

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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
The long walk west: they fled war in Syria, only to get held up in Hungary – now hundreds of refugees have set off on foot for Austria

They fled war in Syria...

...only to get stuck and sidetracked in Hungary
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Title sequences: From The Prisoner to Mad Men

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Life from the inside of a trucker's cab

From stowaways to Operation Stack, it's a challenging time to be a trucker heading to and from the Continent
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Kelis interview

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Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
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The addictive nature of Diplomacy

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Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
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Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea