News Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe delivers his special address at the opening session of the World Economic Forum in Davos

Japan’s trade deficit has hit an all-time high as imports were swollen by higher energy prices and a weak yen.

Bending Adversity, By David Pilling - Review

From the outside, Japan can seem like an enigmatic and mysterious country. Historically closed off to foreign influence until relatively recently, the island nation can seem to Western eyes to be almost incomprehensible in its outlook – culturally, politically and even economically.

2013 - the year in review: Carbon emissions, badger culls and extreme weather made for a terrible year for the environment

The climate change summit was the worst since 1992. All we got was a ‘roadmap’ to an ambitious new deal in 2015

The UK-based charity Practical Action has given British urban landmarks 'make-unders' to highlight the plight of the world's slums

Slum Britain: UK cities given ‘make-unders’ to show what life would be like if Buckingham Palace and the Houses of Parliament were in shanty towns

Government pledges support to Practical Action campaign for sanitation in world’s poorest cities

Camping in 2002; by then the world had only nine more years to go

Rev Harold Camping: Preacher

Evangelist who provoked a media frenzy by predicting that the end of the world was nigh – three times

Why animal charity matters: Helping livestock victims of natural disasters helps people too

Despite possible appearances some animal charities have got their priorities right

Jacob Ostreicher, right, with Sean Penn last year

Sean Penn rescues American businessman Jacob Ostreicher from violent Bolivian jail

The actor released a statement to confirm he was with a New York  businessman who had been spirited out of Bolivia after spending over two years in captivity for crimes he claims he did not commit

View of the 'Grand Prismatic' hot spring in the Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming on 1 June 2011

Yellowstone Supervolcano 2.5 times bigger than previously thought

Researchers claim it could be 2,000 times more powerful than Mount St Helens

Are you snarky or smarmy? Too much sunny side up will fry the brain

A Gawker essay has ignited a culture war on the value of niceness

Aggreko wins Brazil World Cup power contract

Temporary power firm Aggreko — responsible for keeping the lights on and the cameras rolling at the last World Cup in South Africa and at the London 2012 Olympics — has been chosen by FIFA to perform the same duties across 12 different venues in Brazil.

Yellowstone supervolcano a ‘much larger system’ than scientists had thought

Experts say new findings don’t necessarily increase the ‘Yellowstone hazard’ – despite claims it could be due a catastrophic eruption

Scientists solve bizarre mystery of Mima mounds – they are not the work of aliens…

New research suggests geological anomalies are not Native American burial sites but are created by gophers over hundreds of years

Hundreds of seal pups which had been feared dead after a tidal surge hit the east coast of Britain have been found alive and well

Seals found in Norfolk which were feared lost after storm

Hundreds of seal pups which had been feared dead after a tidal surge hit the east coast of Britain have been found alive and well.

UK weather: People urged to remain vigilant as high tides and strong winds continue through the night

Houses been swept into the sea over night as the biggest tidal surge in 60 years hit the east coast. The Environment Agency has urged people to remain vigilant as the high tides continue through the night

Microsoft brands governments a 'persistent threat' alongside malware and cyber attacks

Maker of the world's most popular operating system joins Yahoo and Google in offering encryption as default for customers and their data

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Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza

Andrew Grice: Inside Westminster

Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza
HMS Victory: The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

Exclusive: David Keys reveals the research that finally explains why HMS Victory went down with the loss of 1,100 lives
Survivors of the Nagasaki atomic bomb attack: Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism

'I saw people so injured you couldn't tell if they were dead or alive'

Nagasaki survivors on why Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism
Jon Stewart: The voice of Democrats who felt Obama had failed to deliver on his 'Yes We Can' slogan, and the voter he tried hardest to keep onside

The voter Obama tried hardest to keep onside

Outgoing The Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, became the voice of Democrats who felt the President had failed to deliver on his ‘Yes We Can’ slogan. Tim Walker charts the ups and downs of their 10-year relationship on screen
RuPaul interview: The drag star on being inspired by Bowie, never fitting in, and saying the first thing that comes into your head

RuPaul interview

The drag star on being inspired by Bowie, never fitting in, and saying the first thing that comes into your head
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What's it like when both you and your partner are stand-ups?
Satya Nadella: As Windows 10 is launched can he return Microsoft to its former glory?

Satya Nadella: The man to clean up for Windows?

While Microsoft's founders spend their billions, the once-invincible tech company's new boss is trying to save it
The best swimwear for men: From trunks to shorts, make a splash this summer

The best swimwear for men

From trunks to shorts, make a splash this summer
Mark Hix recipes: Our chef tries his hand at a spot of summer foraging

Mark Hix goes summer foraging

 A dinner party doesn't have to mean a trip to the supermarket
Ashes 2015: With an audacious flourish, home hero Ian Bell ends all debate

With an audacious flourish, the home hero ends all debate

Ian Bell advances to Trent Bridge next week almost as undroppable as Alastair Cook and Joe Root, a cornerstone of England's new thinking, says Kevin Garside
Aaron Ramsey interview: Wales midfielder determined to be centre of attention for Arsenal this season

Aaron Ramsey interview

Wales midfielder determined to be centre of attention for Arsenal this season
Community Shield: Arsene Wenger needs to strike first blow in rivalry with Jose Mourinho

Community Shield gives Wenger chance to strike first blow in rivalry with Mourinho

As long as the Arsenal manager's run of games without a win over his Chelsea counterpart continues it will continue to dominate the narrative around the two men
The unlikely rise of AFC Bournemouth - and what it says about English life

Unlikely rise of AFC Bournemouth

Bournemouth’s elevation to football’s top tier is one of the most improbable of recent times. But it’s illustrative of deeper and wider changes in English life
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Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Icy dust layer holds organic compounds similar to those found in living organisms