Sport Roy Hodgson is hoping the extra day in Manaus will aid the players' acclimatisation

The FA have confirmed that England will face two South American sides in the build-up to Brazil 2014 in an effort to prepare for the threat that Uruguay will pose

Chevron's dirty fight in Ecuador

The giant oil corporation has been fined $8.6bn for an environmental disaster that has been called 'the Amazon's Chernobyl'. But guess what? It may end up paying nothing

Leading article: Ecuador: finally, the polluter is commanded to pay

This ruling could be a sign that poorer countries are no longer prepared to be a dumping ground

Chevron fined 'record' £6bn

Chevron was responsible for oil drilling contamination in a wide swathe of Ecuador's northern jungle and must pay nearly £6 billion in damages and clean-up costs, in what appears to be the highest damage award issued in an environmental lawsuit.

Chevron to contest Ecuadorian $9bn legal claim

An Ecuadorean judge has ordered oil giant Chevron to pay $8.6bn (£5.4bn) damages after ruling it was responsible for oil-drilling contamination in a wide swath of Ecuador's northern jungle from 1972 to 1992. Chevron has called the decision "illegitimate and unenforceable" and said it would appeal.

President drops plan to rule by decree

The Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa has backed off the idea of dissolving Congress and ruling by decree and plans to revise an austerity law that triggered a bloody police revolt.

No forgiveness for my enemies, warns freed President of Ecuador

The President of Ecuador, Rafael Correa, promised yesterday that there would be "no pardon or forgiveness" for the policemen who threw the country into chaos on Thursday when they roughed him up and then held him captive inside a hospital in the capital city, Quito, for more than 12 hours.

Manchester United confirm Valencia will miss most of season

Manchester United have confirmed Antonio Valencia will be out for "a good portion" of the season.

Mexico bleeding to death

Another 72 corpses found in a new mass grave. Feuding cartels blamed for displays of mutilated bodies. Death toll in four-year drugs war passes 28,000

Endangered spaces: Can our wildest places survive tourism?

Our wildest places are overrun with tourists. So how can nature-lovers justify visiting them?

The world's first really green oil deal

Ecuador's $3.6bn scheme to save its rainforest from exploitation could point the way to sparing other threatened landscapes

Michael McCarthy: Inspectors wanted islands kept on the list. So what happened?

In matters of conservation, politicians overruling scientific advice is always a very dodgy business

Fears for unique wildlife of Galapagos as UN drops islands' protected status

Scientists condemn 'premature' removal of world heritage listing

Green maverick fades away as Colombia goes to the polls

Boters in Colombia took to the polls yesterday at the end of a presidential campaign that swung from high drama, with the unexpected rise of a fringe green candidate just a few weeks ago, to almost anti-climactic calm as the ruling party favourite seemed poised to cruise to a landslide win.

Birmingham allow Benitez to leave

Birmingham have decided not to take up the option of signing striker Christian Benitez on a permanent basis.

On The Road: Getting to know colourful creatures in the Ecuadorian Amazon

The exuberance of life in the rainforest is beginning to overwhelm us. Our guide José Macanilla has just pointed out a tiny red Dendrobates frog.

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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
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Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
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Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
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A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'