News Backbench Conservatives MPs have been criticised for supporting a proposed ban on HIV positive immigrants entering Britain

HIV and AIDs campaigners have called the amendment "draconian"

Simon Burns, minister responsible for train fares, uses £80,000-a-year chauffeur-driven government car to 'avoid overcrowded trains'

News is likely to provoke more anger from commuters still reeling from the New Year inflation-busting rise in train fares last week.

Irish man dies after falling from balcony in Tenerife

An Irishman has died after apparently falling from a balcony while on holiday in Tenerife.

Military pressure builds on the regime, with government bases falling to rebel assault near the capital Damascus and elsewhere across the country

Envoy calls on Moscow to back transitional regime in Syria

Brahimi says it is time for power transfer – but avoids question of how Assad allies could fit into new set-up

Page 3 Profile: Chuck Hagel, former US senator

The favourite to be Obama's Defence Secretary?

Russia’s parliament approves bill which bans US
adoptions in reprisal for Magnitsky Act

Russia’s parliament has initially approved a bill banning Americans from adopting Russian orphans in reprisal for a US law – the Magnitsky Act – punishing alleged Russian human rights violators.

Syrian arms embargo to be reviewed

Cameron said Britain was leading the way among international efforts as the second-largest donor to humanitarian aid.

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman resigns after fraud charge

Israel's powerful foreign minister announced his resignation from government today, a day after an indictment for breach of trust was filed against him by the country's attorney general, in a move that shakes up the election campaign and heavily impacts Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's election calculations.

Peace will not break out without tough bargaining

There have times in the 22 months of the Syrian uprising when it seemed Bashar al-Assad might have been toppled – only for the rebels to falter, outgunned by his resurgent forces. But now, for the first time, there appears to be a feeling that he too will become a victim of the Arab Spring. Despite its massive superiority in weaponry, and the indiscriminate way it often uses it, the regime is ceding more and more territory to the opposition.

There have been 197 occasions when Spanish ships sailed into the waters of Gibraltar so far in 2012

MPs condemn Spanish 'act of war' over Gibraltar

Spain was accused of an “act of war” today after its naval ships repeatedly entered the territorial waters of Gibraltar.

Syria's Deputy Foreign Minister, Faisal al-Miqdad

The mystery of Syria's missing spokesman: 'He hasn't disappeared. He's just on three months' leave'

Syria has been gripped by the mystery of the missing foreign ministry spokesman. So what's the truth?

Masked gunmen attack opposition protesters as crowds gather for rallies in Egypt

'At least 11 protesters were wounded in the pre-dawn attack'

UN trucks are unloaded at Damascus airport

Syrian rebels say Damascus airport is fair target

Syrian rebels declared Damascus International Airport to be a legitimate target Friday after days of heavy fighting around the facility and warned civilians to stay away.

Michael Misick is led away by police in Rio de Janeiro

Michael Misick: Turks and Caicos premier 'who left office with $180m fortune' arrested

A former premier of the Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI) whose rule was characterised by adultery, private jets and designer suits, has been arrested on an international warrant.

Hillary Clinton is visiting Stormont

Hillary Clinton condemns recent Norther Ireland violence on the same day police discover bombs in Londonderry and County Down

Continuing tensions in Belfast cast a shadow over a visit to the city by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who condemned recent violence by loyalists complaining of restrictions on the flying of the union jack.

Branko Milinkovic died in front of his country’s diplomatic delegation

Serbia's Nato ambassador jumps to death in Brussels car-park

Branko died in front of his country's diplomatic delegation

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Independent Travel
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 Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory
Ashes 2015: Alastair Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Aussie skipper Michael Clarke was lured into believing that what we witnessed at Edgbaston and Trent Bridge would continue in London, says Kevin Garside
Can Rafael Benitez get the best out of Gareth Bale at Real Madrid?

Can Benitez get the best out of Bale?

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Athletics World Championships 2015: Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jessica Ennis-Hill and Katarina Johnson-Thompson heptathlon rivalry

Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jess and Kat rivalry

The last time the two British heptathletes competed, Ennis-Hill was on the way to Olympic gold and Johnson-Thompson was just a promising teenager. But a lot has happened in the following three years
Jeremy Corbyn: Joining a shrewd operator desperate for power as he visits the North East

Jeremy Corbyn interview: A shrewd operator desperate for power

His radical anti-austerity agenda has caught the imagination of the left and politically disaffected and set a staid Labour leadership election alight
Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief: Defender of ancient city's past was killed for protecting its future

Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief

Robert Fisk on the defender of the ancient city's past who was killed for protecting its future