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.

Environment Secretary Owen Paterson

Owen Paterson echoes David Cameron’s claim that fracking boom can bring down energy bills

Respected economist dismissed similar comment by PM as 'baseless economics'

Japanese government will spend $470 million (£301 million) on a subterranean ice wall in a desperate bid to stop leaks of radioactive water

Nuclear crisis: Japan announces £301m 'ice wall' in desperate attempt to stop Fukushima leaks

Decision seen as an attempt to show that the accident won't be a safety concern as IOC chooses host of 2020 Olympics

A police officer mans the perimeter around Fukushima's nuclear facility

Radiation levels at Fukushima '18 times higher than previously thought'

Radiation levels at Japan's Fukushima nuclear plant are 18 times higher than previously thought, according to officials.

Seamus Heaney poses with the Nobel Prize for Literature he received during the Nobel ceremonies in Stockholm on 10 December 1995

Seamus Heaney dead at 74: The Independent's literary editor pays tribute

'No poet of the past century has voiced dilemmas of the individual conscience torn between anguish at injustice and horror of violence better, or more profoundly'

The News Matrix: Monday 26 August 2013

Irish Sea aftershocks could be felt for days

Aftershocks expected after two earthquakes shake Blackpool

The tremors shook homes in holiday resort

The decision to raise threat level at nuclear plant is seen as another sign that engineers are losing control over the leaks

Radiation crisis at Japan's Fukushima nuclear plant deepens as threat level raised to 'serious'

Decision seen as another sign that engineers are losing control over the leaks

An estimated 300 tonnes of radioactive water is believed to have leaked from a tank at the crippled nuclear plant, the operator said

Nuclear crisis: Fukushima threat level raised to 'serious' as plant leaks 300 tonnes of radioactive water from storage tank

Masked workers found puddles with radiation readings of 100 millisieverts an hour – enough to induce radiation sickness in less than 12 hours

Hundreds converge on Balcombe as fracking protests continue

Protesters have vowed to continue after Caudrilla announces plans to scale back their operation

Vivienne Westwood joined the protesters today at Balcombe

Vivienne Westwood joins anti-fracking protest camp as 1,000-strong crowd descends on Balcombe

'I'm anti-fracking and I'm here to protest. There has been no debate,' she says

Aftershocks rattle New Zealand after strong earthquake

At least six aftershocks hit after magnitude 6.5 South Island tremor

Placards at the entrance of the drill site operated by Cuadrilla in Balcombe

After all the Balcombe protests, energy firm reveals fracking is unlikely there anyway

Cuadrilla says there are likely to be other more suitable sites

Survivors among the rubble look at the destroyed trawler after the tsunami devastated Kesennuma

Rusting trawler is too painful a reminder of Japan’s 2011 tsunami

City of Kesennuma decides 360-ton tuna boat that was washed a kilometre inshore is not a fitting memorial to the 19,000 victims

Engineers working on the drilling platform of the Cuadrilla shale fracking facility in Preston, Lancashire

Fracking: American dream, Chinese pipe-dream, global nightmare

Energy policy should instead focus on renewables

A photo taken today from the Maurole district of East Nusa Tenggara province with a camera phone

At least six killed in Indonesia volcano erupts

Nearly 3,000 people have been evacuated on the remote island

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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 1 May 2015
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk